Sunday, March 29, 2009

Seth Curry to Duke

Last week, it came out that Seth Curry was transferring out of Liberty in search of a bigger program and better basketball. We speculated a bit, and came up with Wake Forest and Virginia as possible destinations.

Well, we were wrong.

News broke today that the younger Curry would be taking his services to Duke. Seth visited Duke today, and committed there before he left the campus. From the Raleigh News & Observer:

"Seth committed before he left," Dell Curry said in an interview. 
Duke was the only school Curry visited since being granted his release by Liberty University. 

"There were other schools he was going to visit, but Coach K really wanted Seth," said Dell Curry, a former Virginia Tech and Charlotte Hornets star.

"His vision for Seth and for the program, it was great as parents to hear someone of his stature sell us on how bad he wanted Seth."
The question now becomes how good is Curry going to be with Duke. The reason that Seth ended up at a school like Liberty that many major programs considered him to be too frail to play at the high-major level (that, and he committed to Liberty early in his senior year - before Steph went on his tear in the tourney - and suffered through a hamstring injury that limited how much he could play during his senior year). Bottom line, this kid can score. He isn't quite the pure shooter that Steph is, but is a bit better at getting to the basket. I'd expect him to be something similar to a Greg Paulus.

I don't know how much Curry is going to help Duke either. The Blue Devils issue right now is toughness. Gerald Henderson, Jon Scheyer, Kyle Singler - these guys are talented and do a lot of things well. But, they are soft. Look at the teams that made the Final Four - UConn, Villanova, UNC, and Michigan State. There are a lot of big, strong, tough kids on those four teams. With the exception of UNC (and the Heels are the exception, not the rule), those three teams survive on pushing you around and beating you up defensively and/or on the glass.

Duke just does not have those kinds of player, and has not for a long time. Jon Scheyer was ineffective as a two-guard because bigger, stronger defenders would keep him from being able to do much on the offensive end. Gerald Henderson can dunk on you, but do you really trust him trying to lock up a guy like Sam Young? Kyle Singler struggled down the stretch last season because he was worn down, physically, from the season. He put on some muscle during the off season, but still, you get my point.

To me, there is a difference between toughness and physical strength as well. Toughness is not just being able to play on a sprained ankle, box out DeJuan Blair, or stand in and take a charge.

Toughness is also Levance Fields knocking down two free throws with 5.5 seconds to tie Villanova, after hitting big threes to put away OK State and Xavier. Toughness is Blake Griffin getting flipped on a cheap shot by a player from Morgan State and not reacting with his fists. Toughness is Cleveland State holding on to a lead when a more talented Wake Forest team makes a run on them.

Where do you see that coming from Duke?


joe said...

you see him as being like greg paulus? he's bigger, can shoot it and is a much better player than that. anyway, he probably wont end up playing with many people from this years duke squad (singler, henderson, paulus, scheyer) will all be gone by the time he steps on the court in the fall of 2010 after sitting out a year.

Rob Dauster said...

I do see him as a Greg Paulus, and contrary to what many believe, that is meant as a compliment. Paulus is a better player than people give him credit for. If Curry can average double figures and shoot 40% from three, I think he would have a pretty successful at Duke.