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Duke dodged top-ranked opponent on Canadian tour

After Kentucky dominated in their Big Blue Bahamas event, going 4-0 against professional basketball teams and players, the Duke Blue Devils tipped off their smaller, less impressive Canadian tour this week against weaker competition in Canada.

They already won their first game against Ryerson University (they were down after the first quarter, but who’s counting), are currently in the middle of their second game against the University of Toronto, and will face off against McGill University on Sunday. Three games in five days compared to Kentucky’s four games in five days.

And apparently, the Blue Devils went out of their way to avoid one of the best universities in all of Canada.

The Carleton University Ravens, a team that defeated Wisconsin in 2014 (yes, those Badgers), the national champion Kansas Jayhawks in 2009, and Division 1 programs such as Cincinnati, Ole Miss, and South Dakota State this week alone, were shut down when they tried to play Duke on this trip.

Carleton’s head coach, Dave Smart, who has won 14 national championships at the school, reached out to Mike Krzyzewski and the Blue Devils, but didn’t receive a call in return.

“I asked if we could go to Montreal or Toronto to play them but there was no call back,” Smart said in an interview with Michael Grange of “We really wanted to play them. We want to play anyone of that calibre. It would be a great experience for our guys and show us our holes. I’m not worried about winning or losing, but teams at that level, we want to play.”

In fact, Duke isn’t the only team avoiding the Ravens.

“I’ve been told coaches are dodging us,” said Smart.

A Duke spokesman said the school chose the cities they wanted to visit first and opponents were decided later.

In other words, they scared.




Article written by Jack Pilgrim

Follow me on Twitter: @JackPilgrimKSR

42 Comments for Duke dodged top-ranked opponent on Canadian tour

  1. Bigblue7982
    7:07 pm August 17, 2018 Permalink

    Scared big time.

    • mashburnfan1
      1:27 am August 18, 2018 Permalink

      Coach Krsyufyguiohgygdjyunsibvytfstski only scheduled the tour to give Barrett {from Canada} some playing time in front of his Country. It could be they did pick the dates and teams based on that. And if that team is that good why would he schedule them and risk losing, Cal would do the same and always having young teams is why Cal won’t play good teams at their place. Not like the teams we played were that good either, is why they are practice games. Plus I thought KSR said that first team dUKe played was 2nd best up there and a top 75 team if down here. I know teams we played were grown ups but they were not that good, I watched all but the last game. Was proud of the way our team seems to love playing together, seems to work extra hard and this group seems to have basketball skills and knowledge. Seems like it could be a fun season but we won’t know till January-Feb.

    • mashburnfan1
      1:32 am August 18, 2018 Permalink

      And those saying Zion was overrated are clueless, he will be a handful. Barrett is really good and probable #1 pick next year. Plus I see in this article dUKe is missing 2 starters and top 15 players. That actually helps us as they will be behind us in development as a team.

  2. UKinIN
    7:33 pm August 17, 2018 Permalink

    I don’t mind stories about upcoming opponents but this is KSR being too concerned about Duke.

    • Jack Pilgrim
      7:37 pm August 17, 2018 Permalink

      Who is Kentucky’s next regular season opponent? #theyscared

    • JTHinton
      7:48 pm August 17, 2018 Permalink

      Central Michigan ;).

      In all seriousness, I like this kind of article. If duke is scared, someone needs to call them out, and we all know Espn won’t do it

    • UKinIN
      8:52 pm August 17, 2018 Permalink

      This is about Duke not returning a phone call. It’s about a decision that Duke made about who to schedule. It has zero bearing on UK v. Duke.

    • 4everUKblue
      10:33 pm August 17, 2018 Permalink

      It has everything to do with dUKe being scared and K’s continued lack of integrity. So keep it coming!

  3. Cincy Cayt
    7:52 pm August 17, 2018 Permalink

    Yeah Duke is scared for sure, but I wish we had scheduled them instead of someone like Team Toronto

    • Bigblue7982
      7:58 pm August 17, 2018 Permalink

      Would’ve been cool but facing pro’s is better since they have more experience and have been together for years.

    • Cincy Cayt
      8:46 pm August 18, 2018 Permalink

      I definitely agree. It’s just that in hindsight with the stories of Toronto partying and not taking the game prep seriously it seems like we could’ve done better. Can’t fault us for thinking they would be serious though – they’re pros.

  4. Wade
    8:34 pm August 17, 2018 Permalink

    I think dukes weak but cal avoided playing in the pk 80 last year so I don’t care leave duke outta here… we can talk about them leading up to our game and maybe show Zion dunks. I hate duke but Zion is pretty quiet and impressed me but he’s the only dookie I ever liked . Sue me , I wanted the kid but happy we have Keldon and are way better off imo.

    • JTHinton
      8:52 pm August 17, 2018 Permalink

      To be fair us not playing in the PK80 was because we weren’t anywhere ready for it. Duke has the top three recruits and is the number one team right now.

    • Wade
      11:20 am August 18, 2018 Permalink

      They’re all freshman and some guys don’t make excuses it’s smart moves but stupid for fans I wanted us in pk80

  5. Cletis75
    9:07 pm August 17, 2018 Permalink

    Coach Kchickenshitski! That’s how he rolls. Maybe the zone D isn’t up to snuff yet!

  6. WVCat
    9:19 pm August 17, 2018 Permalink

    Coach K has more championships than Cal sooooo

    • 4everUKblue
      10:35 pm August 17, 2018 Permalink

      K has been at the same school for 38 damn yrs with the best talent year in and year out even before the one and done era. When you look at the whole picture it’s not nearly as impressive. How many years with the easy road to the final four should he have won? Soooooo

    • Wade
      11:20 am August 18, 2018 Permalink

      Duke is coach k when he is gone that was dukes ride

    • 1UKFAN6
      1:10 pm August 18, 2018 Permalink

      I say this on a daily basis because it’s true. Put cal At Kentucky for that long period of time and he would have more than k. People make every excuse for duke and k but they have had horrible loses with talent since the late 80’s until now. 5 Championships with easy roads to the final four. They’ve had maybe 3 hard brackets since I can remember.

    • wyatts1
      10:50 pm August 17, 2018 Permalink

      Kentucky has more championships then everybody in the NCAA except UCLA. Puke isn’t even close to being in that conversation either, soooo

  7. michaelb
    9:47 pm August 17, 2018 Permalink

    troll city round here

  8. Duff86
    9:52 pm August 17, 2018 Permalink

    I f’n hate Duke. Can’t wait till we beat their asses in the Champions Classic!!!

  9. JMFATZ47
    9:53 pm August 17, 2018 Permalink

    UKinIN: this is smack talk 101. It’s what rivals do. Have fun with it or ignore. I choose to ignore for the most part

    • UKinIN
      10:34 pm August 17, 2018 Permalink

      I appreciate but like I said, this isn’t about UK or even Duke avoiding a team UK played in the Bahamas. Just seems weak to me. That said, ESPN and the college basketball world is going to be focused on Duke because they played second. Nationally UK is going to be right where he wants them in November.

    • 4everUKblue
      10:36 pm August 17, 2018 Permalink

      You have every right not to read it if it bothers you.

    • Wade
      11:21 am August 18, 2018 Permalink

      Duke has the ugliest girls I know duke and ky agree on that…

  10. herm89
    11:15 pm August 17, 2018 Permalink

    Ryerson beat Carleton in the tournament last year. Ryerson also has three of the same players we played against from the Team Toronto team we played in the Bahamas. Just sayin.

    • BlueSteel
      11:58 pm August 17, 2018 Permalink

      Notsofast herm… Yes – those three players were on both teams but their importance to said teams – very different! Only one of them even started against us… Against us they combined to take 13 shots and score a grand total of 7 points – Against Duke it was 35 shots and 30 points and one player who played 20 minutes against us played 39 minutes against Duke… So please don’t try to make it sound like the teams were the same caliber – Not to mention the other teams we played.
      Just sayin.

    • runningunnin.454
      9:55 am August 18, 2018 Permalink

      Yeah, not so fast; Ryerson did not beat Carleton last year; Carleton won their 14th natty in 16 years, and has finished the last two seasons undefeated.

    • runningunnin.454
      10:19 am August 18, 2018 Permalink

      Oops my mistake, Ryerson did win last year. Carleton beat them for the title in 2017 for 13 titles in 15 years.

  11. J. Did
    7:41 am August 18, 2018 Permalink

    Coach KusShefskee is a man of well-laid plans and procedure (as in the annual gift he and his dookies receive come NCAA Tournament time what with being given the easiest road to hoe). Spontaneity and unplanned challenges are never appealing to him.

  12. Kat4Life
    9:09 am August 18, 2018 Permalink

    We all hate Duke, but to infer that they are somehow scared to play a Canadian college team is absurd.

    • kylebsanders7
      1:49 pm August 18, 2018 Permalink

      Barrett, Williamsin, and Reddish are the real deal. Depth and foul trouble will be an issue at times and likely get them bounced in the tournament, but those guys are good. Question is, if they dont win it all with #1’#2′ & #3, and with Capel not there to hate on UK, does their recruiting drop off? I like my team! We will be scary good by Feb, March, April. GBB!!!

  13. 4everUKblue
    9:32 am August 18, 2018 Permalink

    What bothers me most is ANY Kentucky fan taking up for dUKe. I personally don’t see the absurdity, we all know K no longer has any integrity, he is much like Uban Meyer in that he will turn a deaf ear and a blind eye to win a all costs.

    • Kat4Life
      2:18 pm August 18, 2018 Permalink

      I’m not taking up for Duke… I said, we all hate them unconditionally. But don’t kid yourself, they are a top 5 team capable of beating any team….including ours. Let’s not let our chest-beating drift into lunacy

  14. dukeisking
    2:19 pm August 18, 2018 Permalink

    I thought this was the KSR page. WHY DO I FEEL LIKE IM READING AN ARTICLE FROM THE DURHAM PRESS.. You country azz folk stay riding on the Dukies… focus on YOUR CATS..NOT THE BLUE DEVILS…

    • Kat4Life
      2:23 pm August 18, 2018 Permalink

      Says “Duke is King”……

    • runningunnin.454
      2:42 pm August 18, 2018 Permalink

      Duke is king of…what, exactly? UK leads in NCAA titles 8-5.
      UK is No. 1 in
      all time wins
      all time winning percentage
      NCAA tournament appearances
      NCAA tournament wins
      20 win seasons, 30 win seasons, 35 win seasons, and 38 win seasons.
      Go away…Lil Brother.

  15. Rdcombs
    3:39 pm August 18, 2018 Permalink

    The only thing that annoys me is how ESPN slobbers all over themselves for K. All the stories about parents and other relatives unhappy with Duke and not a peep about it. Then, one kid’s dad says UK is unprofessional and it’s the lead story for them.

    • Kat4Life
      4:44 pm August 18, 2018 Permalink

      Along with UNC, Duke has long enjoyed a media halo. K in particular. I would rather beat Duke than Louisville.

    • King_tucky
      7:03 am August 19, 2018 Permalink

      I like what drew said. Rotate fresh guys in constantly n run some weight off zions big ass. Bet by 10 mins in 2nd half u wont see him exploding to the rim. See him passing out like he is Ol Roy Williams on the side line.

  16. TBW3011
    11:22 am August 19, 2018 Permalink

    Yeah. Duke loses that game and Coach K is stuck in Canada needing emergency back surgery. Would take 6 months to have the procedure in Canada with their health care system.