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Quotes: Duke 82, Eastern Michigan 59
Courtesy: Duke Sports Information
Release: 12/28/2013
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Duke Head Coach Mike Krzyzewski
Opening Statement:
“I was really pleased with our team today. Eastern Michigan is really a very good basketball team. They play a tough schedule. They’re an older team and they played a zone the whole time and they’re real wide. Because there is such a gap between when we played and when we didn’t play I watched all their games. They had a chance to beat UMass. The probably should have beaten Purdue and Kentucky pulled away at Kentucky right at the end. We were concerned about them. In the day-and-a-half of preparation I thought my guys did a really good job. There were a few things that stuck out for me. One was the bench play. Andre [Dawkins], Rasheed [Sulaimon] and Amile [Jefferson] . I think the three of them combined for like 40 points and 19 rebounds. We needed that especially after Rodney [Hood] got sick. He threw up right before the game and at halftime he’s getting an IV. He still got eight points and eight rebounds, but he wasn’t the same guy. I thought our offensive rebounding was excellent and our defense overall was really good until the end when we gave up about seven points on turnovers. My guys did a good job and we beat a good team. I’m very happy about that.”

On the energy of the bench players, particularly Jefferson, Sulaimon and Dawkins today:
“Especially Amile. Amile had 14 rebounds in 21 minutes so he was going after the ball. We have a really good group of guys in that they are so supportive of one another. Quinn [Cook] did not have a shooting day, but he’s happy to get the ball to Andre. The last two games Rasheed has played really well and he’s practiced well for about 10 days before the UCLA game and he’s kept it up. To see Tyler [Thornton], who [Rasheed would] be taking minutes away from Tyler in the so called world of taking minutes away or whatever. They’re very supportive. Josh [Hairston] is supportive of Amile. They’re a good group of guys. We’re going to have to keep building on that.”

On Dawkins saying he is coaching basketball now and not attitude
“I think our attitudes have been really good. I think a couple of the veterans early on in October and November…when the reality of this is our last year…it’s like it’s a different play. Last year was a drama and this is an action and in some games a comedy or whatever. You have to get a different part and sometimes people want to stay in what they did and not adapt into what they need to do. We always have to adapt. I have to adapt as a coach to who I coach. But it’s easier for me because I do it every year. It’s not easy for a youngster to do it. I think we all get it right now. It’s never been about bad attitudes. Our guys are terrific. They’re a terrific group. It’s about learning and when you start out with a different team early on you have to give it time to grow and I think we’re growing. I think we’re getting better.”

On adjustments in the second half:
“I thought we were a little more aggressive against the zone. We hit the middle. Kind of like the UCLA game, we kind of exploded against the zone and today we did the same thing. The defense kind of stayed throughout. I thought we did a really good job defensively today. The kid [Mike] Talley played a really good game. He’s been playing really well for them and he played another good game.”

On the corners being open against the zone:
“They were. We weren’t hitting the corners and I was getting frustrated. Part of it is when you have [Glenn] Bryant and [Karrington] Ward on wings and they’re up, they’re really wide and they’re quick. So when you hit the wing there a lot of times he feels pressure on this side like that’s the corner and he doesn’t hit it even though it’s open. And that’s what we were doing. In the second half I thought we did that and at times we tried to put Jabari [Parker] in the corner to do it. But the corners were open. We just moved the ball better in the second half.”

Eastern Michigan Head Coach Rob Murphy
“As far as the game, Duke is a very good team. They played with a lot of energy today, a lot of effort on their home floor. I thought throughout the first half, we were in striking distance, but we weren’t able to rebound the basketball. I thought second-chance opportunities helped them get some open looks, which stretched the lead to 10. Going into the second half, again we didn’t rebound the ball well. They were able to get some second-chance opportunities and they were able to knock down some 3’s. Andre Dawkins was huge today, obviously Jabari Parker played a really good game.”

“Moving forward, we just have to keep getting better, each and every day, in each and every situation. We played a really good team tonight, a really good focused team, and they did a great job. Saying that, I’m looking forward to our next game at Syracuse, which is going to be tough. But we’re going to have to find a way to keep getting better, rebound the ball better.

On EMU’s first-half defense:
“It was just our 2-3 zone, some of the philosophies that I brought from Syracuse and took to Eastern Michigan with me. Just where we have our length and our forwards come up, our guards make an effort to keep the ball out of the high post. It’s important that when the shot goes up, you have to rebound the ball. I thought we did a great job of showing and forcing [Duke] into some contested shots, but we gave up 20 offensive rebounds, and I give them credit for going to the glass. To be successful, ultimately, the way we play, we have to rebound the basketball, and we didn’t do a great job of that tonight.”