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Duke Now is your place for Blue Devil hoops and football. Beat writer Laura Keeley has up-to-the-minute news and analysis. Columnist Luke DeCock also contributes. Follow us on Twitter at @laurakeeley or @accnow.

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Curry's return from ankle injury keys Duke win

DURHAM -- One of the more important moments in Duke’s comeback against N.C. State on Thursday night came in the first half, just as the Wolfpack was building a commanding early lead. 

Seth Curry went up for a loose ball and came down awkwardly. When he got up, he put weight on his ankle to see if he could continue.The grimace on his face suggested Curry’s return was far from certain.

“When he went out, I thought he was gone,” Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski said. “Jose (Fonseca), our trainer, was just telling me that Seth said, ‘Man, I don’t know if I can go,’ and Jose said, ‘You have to go.’ Seth said, ‘It hurts,’ and Jose said, ‘I’ll give you a shot.’”

Three Points: Duke 78, N.C. State 73

Three Points from N.C. State's 78-73 loss at Duke on Thursday night:

1) Comeback or collapse?

Any time you lose a 20-point lead, especially in the second half, there are elements of a collapse. And after N.C. State's lead over Duke grew to 61-41 with 11:33 left in the game, the Wolfpack certainly contributed to its own demise.

State made 22 of its first 43 shots (51 percent) in the first 28 minutes and 27 seconds of the game and then went 4 of 16 (25 percent), without making a 3-pointer, the rest of the way.

Duke rallies from 20 to beat Wolfpack, 78-73

DURHAM — In the course of eight days, Duke has come up with two of its more memorable rallies in recent memory.

The Blue Devils rallied from a 20-point second half deficit against N.C. State on Thursday for a shocking 78-73 win over the Wolfpack at Cameron Indoor Stadium. Austin Rivers hit a 3-pointer with 2:24 left to bring Duke all the way back from the huge deficit.

By that point, N.C. State seemed hopelessly rattled, as the Blue Devils finished the game on a 37-12 run. It was somewhat reminiscent of last Wednesday, when Duke rallied from a 10-point deficit with a little more than 2 minutes left for a thrilling victory over UNC.

Duke-NC State live chat tonight

It may not be an Officially Sanctioned ACC Rivalry, but it's a big one tonight. So join me for running commentary and Q&A during the Duke-N.C. State game, beginning at 9 p.m.

Better than TV. Sort of.

Duke's Jackson injured against Virginia Tech

DURHAM – Duke sophomore Richa Jackson injured her left knee in the first half of the Blue Devils' 67-45 victory Virginia Tech on Wednesday.

Jackson, a starting foward for the No. 5 Devils, went down awkwardly out of bounds near the nine minute mark of the first half. She remained on the floor for several minutes and, limping on her right leg, had to be assisted off the court. 

She would not return.

Asked for an update on Jackson, Duke coach Joanne P. McCallie said, "I can't give you anything more, but she's hurt. I'm not a doctor. She's out."

Gottfried high on the Blue Devils

Mark Gottfried and Mike Krzyzewski are in a mutual admiration society, at least before Thursday's game between their ACC teams in Durham.

Krzyzewski complimented Gottfried's N.C. State team earlier in the week, calling them an NCAA tournament team, and Gottfried returned the favor on Wednesday, calling Duke one of the "two or three best teams" in the country.

"They're a terrific team and they've had a great year. I really like their team," Gottfried said.  "They're certainly one of the two or three best teams in the country, in my opinion."

Coach K stresses Duke's overall accomplishments

DURHAM – Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski has a sore throat and his voice was more raspy than usual Monday on the ACC teleconference.

Nonetheless, he stressed that a lot has gone right for this year’s Blue Devil team, even if  they are not quite as consistent as he’d like. Heading into Thursday’s home game against N.C. State, Duke is 21-4 and 8-2 in the ACC, balancing perplexing efforts against Miami and St. John's with strong wins over North Carolina and Maryland.

“You’d rather have it more stable,” Krzyzewski said. “But every team in the country is somewhat inconsistent. That’s why every team in the country loses games. Even some of the great players in our country have a bad game.”

Three final thoughts on Duke's 73-55 win over Maryland

No. 10 Duke had a strong second half Saturday afternoon, maintaining its momentum from Wednesday’s win over North Carolina with a 73-55 victory against Maryland at Cameron Indoor Stadium.

From Miles Plumlee’s monster effort on the glass (22 rebounds, an all-time high for a Mike Krzyzewski-coached team) to Seth Curry’s steady offensive performance, there were a lot of things the Blue Devils had to like about the win.

Here are three of the more encouraging things Duke can take from the victory:

Duke leads Maryland 32-29 at halftime

Tags: Duke Now

DURHAM – Once again, the Duke Blue Devils are struggling in another ACC home game. This time, it’s the Maryland Terrapins who are giving the Blue Devils another test inside Cameron Indoor Stadium.

At halftime, Duke leads Maryland 32-29. That's been the Blue Devils biggest lead.

The Blue Devils have done a nice job on defense by forcing the Terrapins into nine turnovers.

On offense, the Blue Devils have been most effective in transition. When Duke has been able to run the floor, guards in Seth Curry and Austin Rivers have made long 3-pointers. Forward Mason Plumlee has also scored two baskets – including a two-handed dunk – after Maryland turnovers.

The problem for the Blue Devils is when they are forced to run their halfcourt offense.

Besides missing shots inside, Duke has struggled to found its rhythm once Maryland’s defense is set. So far, the Blue Devils are resorting to long 3-pointers, which didn’t produce much success. Duke is just five of 16 from behind the arc.

Plumlee leads Duke with 10 points.

Early in the first half, the Blue Devils (20-4, 7-2 ACC) were sloppy with the ball. Maryland’s biggest lead was seven points midway through the first half.

Maryland (14-9, 4-5) is led by guard Terrell Stoglin, who has 11 points. Though Stoglin has missed five of his first six shots from the perimeter, he’s made up for it at the free-throw line where’s he’s made all five attempts.

Taylor: 919-829-4538


Laettner enters coaching ranks

Patience has never come as easily to Christian Laettner as, say, intensity.

And so while Laettner loved a lot of things about running his own basketball academy for the past couple of years in Jacksonville, Fla., he never completely had the serenity required to nurture high school players.

As a result, Laettner contacted Chris Lauten, a former Duke manager who now works in the front office of the NBA’s Development League. Lauten eventually put Laettner in touch with the Fort Wayne Mad Ants’ ownership after the Mad Ants fired their head coach and promoted an assistant to replace him in early January.

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