Parise: Duke Can Show It's "More Than A One-Man Band"

Playing without Zion Williamson could actually help Duke in the long run

Taz and the Moose
February 22, 2019 - 9:55 am
Zion Williamson Duke North Carolina Knee Injury

USA Today Images


Tickets for the Duke-North Carolina game reached Super Bowl-level prices Wednesday. The players, meanwhile, were not compensated, and Zion Williamson – the likely No. 1 pick in the NBA Draft – sprained his knee less than a minute into the action.

Isn’t that…wrong?

“Listen, it’s the greatest rivalry in college sports, and then you just have the phenomenon of Zion and Duke,” Fox Sports college basketball analyst Vin Parise said on Taz & The Moose, explaining why ticket prices were so high. “I think that that game will just fuel and fuel and fuel the speculation. You can say that amateurism is criminal and Zion deserves to get paid, but you can also say that this year playing one year of college basketball completely changed Zion Williamson’s future and his market value moving forward. I think you have an argument on every sense.”

While Williamson avoided disaster and is listed as day-to-day, No. 1 Duke (23-3) must find a way to win without him. Without a post presence, the Blue Devils shot 39 threes against UNC – and made just eight (20.5 percent).

“This is hands-down the best player in college basketball, and this is going to affect this team,” Parise said. “They may have to shoot the basketball on the perimeter a little bit more. We’ve seen Duke have some success in that area recently, but for the most part, we’ve seen them be really inconsistent in that area.”

Many fans and analysts believe that Williamson should sit out the rest of the season to ensure that he is fully healthy for the NBA Draft. Parise doesn’t see that happening.

“I honestly believe he will not be out as long as social media is (speculating and) going crazy over it,” Parise said. “I think moving forward, this team could show it’s more than a one-man band. I think if they can get him back healthy, this is still the best team in the land.”