Duke will be without star freshman Zion Williamson against Wake Forest

Duke will be without star freshman Zion Williamson against Wake Forest

Despite being without star Zion Williamson, R.J. Barrett and the rest of the Blue Devils squad pulled out a 71-70 win over the Demon Deacons. Without him? They could be stumbling off the top line altogether.

The 6-foot-7 freshman forward, sidelined since suffering a sprained knee on February 20, didn't play in No. 4 Duke's 71-70 win over Wake Forest on Tuesday night in its home finale.

The team that could overtake the Blue Devils for a top seed resides eight miles down the road in Chapel Hill. He suffered the injury 36 seconds into the Blue Devils' 88-72 loss to North Carolina at Cameron Indoor.

The Australian college star and National Basketball Association prospect nearly cost his Duke Blue Devils the game against Wake Forest on Wednesday, committing a crucial turnover in the game's dying seconds. He returned to the bench but didn't return to the game.

Williamson has missed four consecutive game since the injury.

"He's getting more confidence, and we just have to get him in shape", Coach K was quoted as saying by ESPN.

"We're not concerned about that", Krzyzewski said.

Jordan Murphy had all 13 of his points in the first half to go with 14 rebounds, with fellow seniors Dupree McBrayer (10 points, four rebounds, four assists) and Matz Stockman (nine points, six rebounds, seven blocks) also playing key roles for the Gophers (19-11, 9-10). And the fast breaks, second shots, we have to try to do that. "We tried to recruit him very, very hard". I don't know where it will all end up, but we've played probably the toughest schedule.

Without having to face Williamson, North Carolina would be a long way toward its first regular-season sweep of Duke since 2009. "We needed to take a few losses to keep us humble and working and fighting".

"He'd love to play Saturday, too, if he's ready", Krzyzewski said. We did not do a good job with that. "We're working on it even if he did play". "No status", was the official word on the eventual ACC player of the year heading into the game.

"His knee is going to be OK", Krzyzewski said.

With conference tournaments and March Madness right around the corner, if you're a bookie or avid sports gambler, be sure to keep an eye on these current odds as they are likely to fluctuate and change as teams advance.

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