Sunday, September 24, 2023

Coach K's Last Duke Team Rallies Past Murray State Despite Morant's 30 Points

Ja Morant and Murray State dominated Coach Mike Krzyzewski's final Duke squad most of the way. With 18 possessions to play, Morant converted an "and-one" to make him 14 of 15 from the line, give Murray State a 63-56 lead, and give Wendell Moore his 4th foul after Jeremy Roach had already fouled out guarding Morant. Morant would finish with 30 points (see complete box score at bottom,and click Value Add Basketball Game. for the free game).

The game pitted Coach K's last team which made it to the 2022 Final Four, against Ja Morant's debut on the national stage, where his team destroyed Markus Howard and Marquette in the 2019 opening round the year before Morant was name NBA Rookie of the Year. 

Morant's NBA teammate Shaq Buchanan put up 28 points, while Duke had to put three players in the game who were not scheduled to play to cover the extra possessions at Point Guard. Joe Baker had to play the final 12 possessions even though his Stamina is only 6, meaning on the last 6 possessions all numbers were adjusted on against him due to fatigue.

However, with Murray State's other eight players combining for only 20 points, Duke's balance and size wore Murray State down in the end. Mark Williams, with the ultimate 21-26, 23 blocked shot range as a 7-footer, blocked a couple of shots that would have gone into tie the game late, and grabbed a game high 12 rebounds to help Duke to a 32-25 edge on the Boards, and Duke won the last 10 minutes 29-15 to pull the game out 85-78 to advance in our 4th all-time great tournament.

This is our 4th tournament using the all-time great teams in the Value Add Basketball Game. Our first men's all-time 96 greatest teams ever, but limiting each team to one team per century, concluded with Bill Walton's UCLA defeating Michael Jordan's UNC, 66-58 (see men's game log here). In our All-Time Women's tournament we believed the UConn 2010 and 2016 teams were the best two, but in the end it was Pat Summit's 1998 Tennessee 66 defeating Louisiana Tech led by then point guard Kim Mulkey 58. We then created another 50 teams and Paul Pierce' Kansas 1997 team destroyed the last Big Ten Champion (Mateen Cleaves 2000Michigan State) 85-61 for the second title. Those two were not included in the first batch because I had gone with Wilt Chamberlain's Kansas team and Magic Johnson's Michigan State team. On the women's side Pat Summit's Tennessee beat Notre Dame for the title. This tournament is between a third batch of additional teams created to catch a few more great teams from those schools that already had a few in the game, but with a bigger focus on getting new colleges at least one team - particularly making sure any team in one of the major conferences in 2024 have at least one team from their history.

Note: And yes, I am watching the Packers' game on TV like everyone else in Wisconsin as I roll my first dice of the game. I actually find it is easier to play a different board game sport then the sport I am watching TV. Otherwise I have moments where I do things like, "wait, did I just have a double on my game or was that a double in the gam eon TV LOL."

Because we are now making slight adjustments to some teams Dunk Ranges to make the game even more precise, note that I am starting to put at the top of the team if the team's dunk ranges have been "Verified." If this is not the case, and you see an adjustment listed by the team on the top of the google doc, then you can adjust the dunk range up or down by the number specified (biggest improvement possible is a +4, while worst is a -4, but most are unchanged). 

Both teams have a mediocre 0.99 defense A (expected to allow 0.99 points per possession against other great teams in the game), which was better than we expected for Duke 2022 who we improved from a +3 to 0 on the defensive adjustment. The reason Murray State has the same defensive rating but a slightly worse +1 is that their average defensive steals range is 4.2 while Duke's is 3.2 as shown on this dunk range calculator. Therefore Murray State on average steals the ball on a 11-14 and Duke on a 11-13 giving Murray State a slightly edge on defense, so the calculator balances this by giving Duke a slightly better +0 to Murray State's +1 on allowing open drives to the basket and they come out even at a 0.99 AdjD.

The other factors are equal for both teams, which both average 3.6 on blocked shots a 3.2 on defensive rebounds. A 3.0 is the average on all three of these factors, so both are at least above average on all three other defensive factors.

However, on offense Duke's 51-57 dunk range was verified as already accurate, while it turns out Murray State was lowered to no dunk range (their cards are good enough offensively to score the 1.03 per trip, but it takes 7 in the dunk range to get Duke to average 1.13 per trip with completely average dice rolls).

When you put it all together, when Murray State has the ball there is no dunk range so we ignore all rolls of 51-66 and go to the 20-sided die for the result of the shot or foul drawn.

When you go to the Value Add Basketball Game dunk charge, Duke's 51-57 dunk range and the +1 from Murray State's defense adds up to 51-58, but that is really a 51-62 in the game since these are two 6-sided dice so there are no rolls of 57, 58, 59 or 60.

We also wrote in the possessions we plan to play each player and will add it to the cards later. We use a penny on a player in the game who only gets the ball on one if the 1-5 rolls on the 7-sided die. The dimes indicate who also gets it on a 6, 7 or 8, and at the start of the game pictured, Morant gets the ball on a 6 and 7 in addition to a 1. However Duke starts the game with only 2 dimes.meaning a "8" no one and requires a second roll, and on that roll a 6-8 is a shot clock violation.

Game Results

Pos              Murray State 2019     Actual Stats                          Ht    Pts  Reb  Stls  Blks  Fls
1-PGJa Morant24.5 Pts, 5.7 Reb, 10.0 Ast6'3302213
2-SGLeroy Buchanan13.0 Pts, 4.2 Reb, 1.7 Ast6'3284113
3-SFTevin Brown11.8 Pts, 4.7 Reb, 2.3 Ast6'546102
4-PFDarnell Cowart10.3 Pts, 6.5 Reb, 1.1 Ast6'833004
5-CK.J. Williams7.6 Pts, 4.7 Reb, 0.5 Ast6'1024011
1-PGBrion Whitley3.0 Pts, 0.6 Reb, 0.3 Ast6'400001
2-SGJaiveon Eaves3.5 Pts, 0.9 Reb, 0.4 Ast6'200000
3-SFBrion Sanchious2.7 Pts, 2.9 Reb, 0.6 Ast6'854002
4-PFMike Davis3.2 Pts, 2.8 Reb, 0.6 Ast6'741111
5-CDevin Gilmore3.6 Pts, 2.8 Reb, 0.4 Ast6'621011
 Murray St. TotalsGame Turnovers 11 78255518
PosDuke 2022Actual StatsHtPtsRebStlsBlksFls
1-PGJeremy Roach8.6 Pts, 2.4 Reb, 3.2 Ast6'141105
2-SGWendell Moore13.4 Pts, 5.3 Reb, 4.4 Ast6'5152304
3-SFTrevor Keels11.5 Pts, 3.4 Reb, 2.7 Ast6'4161201
4-PFPaolo Banchero17.2 Pts, 7.8 Reb, 3.2 Ast6'10198222
5-CMark Williams11.2 Pts, 7.4 Reb, 0.9 Ast7'01012031
1-PGJaylen Blakes1.0 Pts, 0.7 Reb, 0.5 Ast6'121002
2-SGBates Jones1.4 Pts, 1.1 Reb, 0.4 Ast6'872101
3-SFJoey Baker4.5 Pts, 1.2 Reb, 0.4 Ast6'621002
4-PFAJ Griffin10.4 Pts, 3.9 Reb, 1.0 Ast6'641011
5-CTheo John2.8 Pts, 2.5 Reb, 0.4 Ast6'963002
 Duke TotalsGame Turnovers 9 85329621

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