Stakes are High as No. 4 Duke, No. 3 UNC Battle Saturday

Stakes are High as No. 4 Duke, No. 3 UNC Battle Saturday

While they were able to escape the 24.5 point underdog Wake Forest Demon Deacons' upset bid down in Durham, 71-70, sans Zion Williamson, the fourth-ranked Duke Blue Devils can not escape the proverbial target that is on their backs.

Nassir Little #5 of the North Carolina Tar Heels reacts after a dunk against the Florida State Seminoles during the first half of their game at the Dean Smith Center on February 23, 2019 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. On Friday afternoon, Mike Krzyzewski said that he thinks Zion would be "doubtful" but Williamson would go through a non-contact workout on Friday and the team would announce his status on Saturday morning after shoot-around.

Goodchild's 73 made 3s this season are the most ever by a Duke freshman and the sixth-most by a freshman in ACC history.

Krzyzewski added that Williamson, who averaged 21.6 points and 8.8 rebounds per game in 28.2 minutes on the court this season, had already returned to do some basketball work during practice.

The good news from Tuesday's bad game is that it sounds like Williamson will be back for the ACC Tournament next week.

Following the win over Wake Forest, the Blue Devils are 26-4 for the season and 14-3 against ACC opponents, one game behind joint-leaders Virginia and North Carolina.

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At one point, Wake led by as many as 10, and it was only a pair of misses near the basket at the end that allowed Duke to escape with the win.

"Not assume, we are [getting him back]", he said.

He's the most dominating player in America, and he changes the whole landscape of the game whenever he's playing. And that would force the Tar Heels to find other options to score points that it didn't have to count on last time.

UNC coach Roy Williams on Thursday said the Tar Heels (25-5, 15-2) were preparing as if Williamson would play, but "why worry about that part of it?"

"He's so team-oriented", Krzyzewski said.

It might be safe to assume that Williamson will not play on Saturday night, but he is nearly definitely going to play in both the ACC and NCAA Tournaments. You are going to play.' The kid is a victor.

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