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Quotes: Duke 65, Virginia 55
Courtesy: Duke Sports Information
Release: 02/15/2017
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Duke Head Coach Mike Krzyzewski
Opening Statement:
“Well, we won a big-time game. They’re good, we’re good, the crowd’s great. What Tony has developed here is sensational. It’s a beautiful place, good team, great crowd, great kids. We feel we have the same thing, and so when you’re going against each other you should expect an outstanding game. We played very well in that second half. Our offensive efficiency was outstanding. We made a little change to our offense that worked, and Jason had one of those few minutes where that’s what separates ordinary players from outstanding players. There is nothing about coaching there. We wanted him to take the shots, but it was like four points and all of the sudden it was like 10. That game was not a 10-point game. His shots were bigger because it’s a one or two possession game. All of a sudden, two three’s gave you about three more possessions. Again, I counted two points each possession and you go from two to five. Wow. Those are big time shots. We hit free throws down at the end. We’ve been hitting free throws at a high rate, especially if Luke or Jason are shooting them. We are proud of our performance. We have ultimate respect for them, so it was just a really good win for us.”
On Senior Guard Matt Jones’ performance and defense against London Perrantes:
“An unsung hero for us in these last three weeks getting everybody back and getting me back. Matt’s been the key guy for us and he started on Saturday, awesome game. He guarded Jackson from North Carolina; you guys will play them. He got twenty-one but he had to work for it, and I think he’s as good a player as there is in the league. What he does, Perrantes is one of the best players in the country and he’s the guy that makes them go and he’s just an outstanding leader and player, but he had to work really hard and he didn’t get the percentage that he normally gets and that’s all you’re trying to do. I don’t think he played poorly, but I don’t think he played great and that’s what you’re trying to do against the best player from the other team. So, I credit Matt a lot with that.”
On decreasing the turnovers from eight to three:
“I think part of it was the offense we were running. We gave ourselves more room and it was so compact. Either you took a bad shot or you might turn it over, you didn’t really have a chance for an offensive rebound because they played really good defense.”
On Freshman Forward Jayson Tatum’s performance:
“I think it starts from his defensive rebounding. He was very physical, he had eight rebounds and a couple of them were really big time. He was playing the game at a better pace with a better intensity instead of more of a finesse. I thought what he did on the defensive end really helped him on the offensive end.”

Virginia Head Coach Tony Bennett
Overall game reflection:
“First I want to give credit to Duke - they really guarded us hard. It was one of those games where you had to work to get the catches. I think we had decent shots in terms of what we could get against them without being able to throw the ball inside and score. I thought we got to the elbows and had some opportunities at the rim, but we sometimes had a little trouble finishing. It was a good defensive Duke team tonight. We tried to run hard and I think we worked really hard defensively. We actually flew around and I liked our scrappy defensive play. We did the job for the most part on Grayson Allen and on Luke Kennard. And then you saw a special performance by Jayson Tatum. I watched the tape and I thought Isaiah Wilkins was for the most part there but, it’s a talented team and they are obviously well coached. When we had opportunities, we weren’t as efficient as we needed to be. But it was a hard-fought game. But, I appreciated how hard they played and we just weren’t as good at putting the ball in the basket, which Duke had a lot to do with.”
On second half performance:
“We had one break down defensively to start the second half. They got a layup at the rim and we didn’t help on a back screen. Then we had a couple of turnovers from good Duke pressure. Every possession for us mattered, and when we did get a chance to maybe take the lead or get a big shot we couldn’t capitalize. I think when you’re playing as hard as we did, it takes your legs a little bit - however, we didn’t have a choice. The play on the glass was really tough. We had to go a little more traditional because they exploited us when we had four guards, which hurt our scoring somewhat.”
On recent losses:
“I mean, you really want to win. But, it’s a fine line and we are in so many close games. This ball club has some limitations in certain areas and we are fighting like crazy. We are doing some good things and we have some strengths, but we are going to be in a lot of close games. In this one we played hard, but we were outplayed. And that’s the reality against Duke. I can’t say if we had just gotten this one call it would have been different. We do need to shoot better, but they were the better team tonight.”
On second half shooting:
“I think we worked incredibly hard to be as ready as we could be in the first half. I think talent is going to emerge at some point, but tonight it was more individual plays and fewer breakdowns. But, every time we needed a stop they would put the dagger in us with a late shot clock play or a deep three. We are working hard to become a better defensive team and we have to get better for 40 minutes, but it’s not for a lack of trying. They tried hard tonight and it wasn’t enough.”