Maui Invitational: Gonzaga Bulldogs vs Duke Blue Devils

2018 Maui Invitational

College Basketball Powerhouses Square Off in Finals

The Duke Blue Devils and the Gonzaga Bulldogs will on Wednesday when they meet at Lahaina Civic Center. They are playing in the 2018 Maui Jim Maui Invitational Finals. Duke is going for their 7th tournament championship.

TV: 5 p.m. ET, ESPN

LINE: Duke -7; O/U: 164

Duke’s freshman class that includes future NBA lottery picks R.J. Barrett, Zion Williamson and Cam Reddish has drawn comparisons to Michigan’s famed Fab Five for its talent. It was unheralded junior center Marques Bolden who stole the spotlight in a 78-72 semifinal victory over No. 8 Auburn. His play was instrumental in moving the top-ranked Blue Devils into Wednesday’s dream championship game matchup with No. 3 Gonzaga in the Maui Jim Maui Invitational.

The 6-11 Bolden finished with 11 points, nine rebounds and seven blocked shots. That included a crucial trio late in the game as Auburn made a run. He made the play of the game when he blocked a shot under his own basket. He then raced down and finished a fast break with a dunk off a lob pass by standout freshman point guard Tre Jones.

“This is the best, by far, that we have protected our basket in a few years,” Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski told reporters. “I mean for a kid to get seven blocks and change shots in there. … The defense was exquisite. It was at the highest level. Seven blocks and changing some shots, man, that’s a heck of a performance.”

The Blue Devils will need another great effort in the title game against Gonzaga. They overcame a slow and sloppy first half to outscore Arizona by 25 points in the second half of a 91-74 victory.

Both Teams are 5-0 on the Season and Playing Quality Basketball

The Blue Devils hadn’t been tested in their first four games. It was a span which included a 118-84 blowout of then-No. 2 Kentucky and a 90-64 first-round triumph over Mountain West power San Diego State. They led Auburn by just five points before Reddish nailed a long 3-pointer.

Barrett, rated by some scouting services as the likely No. 1 pick in the 2019 NBA Draft, finished with 18 points and nine rebounds. He was just 7-for-20 from the floor while Reddish also scored 18 points, including 4-of-10 3-pointers, and Williamson chipped in with 13 and nine boards.

Duke is 18-0 all-time in games played in the Maui Jim Maui Invitational.

The Zags overcame 10 first-half turnovers and a 13-point deficit with 19 minutes remaining to pull away for an easy double-digit win over Arizona. They shot 53.1 percent in the process.

Sophomore guard Zach Norvell Jr. led the way with 20 points, 10 rebounds and six assists. 6-8 forward Rui Hachimura scored a team-high 24 points and point guard Josh Perkins finished with 18 and nine assists.

6-10 junior F Killian Tillie is considered a potential first round NBA pick. He connected on 13-of-14 3-pointers in last season’s WCC tournament, underwent ankle surgery last month and isn’t expected back until January.

PREDICTION: Duke 90, Gonzaga 86

Maui Invitational: Gonzaga Bulldogs vs Duke Blue Devils 1

College Basketball Betting Odds & Trends

Duke Blue Devils:
Team record: 5-0 SU,3-2 ATS
Current Streak: won 5 straight games.
Duke is 12-6 ATS in its last 18 games
Duke is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games
The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Duke’s last 5 games

Gonzaga Bulldogs:
Team record: 5-0 SU,4-1 ATS
Current Streak: won 5 straight games.
Gonzaga is 4-1 ATS in its last 5 games
Gonzaga is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Gonzaga’s last 5 games

Next up:
Duke home to Indiana Tuesday, November 27
Gonzaga home to North Dakota State Monday, November 26

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Maui Invitational: Gonzaga Bulldogs vs Duke Blue Devils 1