Bruins fall to No. 8 Duke in Madison Square Garden

Earlier this month, Missouri outscored UCLA by 17 in the second half of a nine-point victory. In Thursday night’s 80-63 win at Madison Square Garden, No. 8 Duke did the same to the Bruins.

Now 11 games into their first season under coach Steve Alford, UCLA has rolled over subpar opponents while falling short late against big-name programs. The team is promising: it can put up points, and it can do so at the breakneck pace promised before the season. But it also lacks fortitude on defense and on the boards, and has yet to prove late-game resolve.

Much of the same was on display against the Blue Devils.

The Bruins (9-2) took control of the game’s rhythm toward the end of the first half, and entered the break tied at 37. They never truly rediscovered that groove. Following a 5-of-8 showing from beyond the arc through the first 20 minutes, they shot 3-of-15 the rest of the way.

The Blue Devils (9-2) had 41 rebounds to UCLA’s 35, and 21 assists to 12. Potential No. 1 pick Jabari Parker lit up Madison Square Garden with 23 points, 10 rebounds and five assists — keying the Duke offense as he does on most nights.

UCLA point guard Kyle Anderson had 15 points, 10 rebounds and seven assists in front of his hometown crowd, while leading scorer Jordan Adams had just 10 points. Freshman guard Zach LaVine had the worst game of his young career, finishing with seven points and missing five of his six 3-point attempts.

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  • BruinInSeattle

    well, they got a coach they can talk to but in exchange, now they’re soft and lacking a killer instinct.

  • Mark

    This game played out just like I anticipated. Does this team even have an offensive system. Looks like 5 guys doing 5 different things out there.

  • BruinAZ

    should have came out in the 2nd half in the zone that they did so well with in the first half. Instead they let Duke run up on them like they did at the beginning of the game when playing man. Too many missed opportunities. This one was winnable and closer than the score shows. Everybody but KA gave up at the end.

    • Bruwins

      I was wondering the same thing, why didn’t they come out with the zone.

  • Joe Blow

    We choked. We looked like a high school squad in the second half. Alford is horrible.

    • gotroy22

      Ha Ha Westwood High can’t compete with the big boys!

      • LTEfan

        Hilarious to read USC fans mocking anyone else’s basketball program. Keep us laughing.

      • UCLA Owns the Rose Bowl

        At least we still play varsity basketball. But at least pUSC has football…wait, no you don’t!

    • UCLA Owns the Rose Bowl

      Yes, “you” did–losing to mightly Long Beach State!

      Waiting for predicatable JB retort: “We know we suck in basketball… we don’t care… your football team should have made a BCS game, COY, Butkus, etc… at least we weren’t in denial that our football team sucked.” There Joe, got it all out of the way for ya.

      • Joe Blow

        You know I think SC BB is horrible and could care less. Please see bottom part of your post.

        • maze949

          *couldn’t care less, illiterate SUC “grad”.

          • Joe Blow

            At least I don’t live in the IE. hahaha

          • Joe Blow

            The inverted form I could care less was coined in the US and is found only here, recorded in print by 1966. The question is, something caused the negative to vanish even while the original form of the expression was still very much in vogue and available for comparison – so what was it? There are other American English expressions that have a similar sarcastic inversion of an apparent sense, such asTell me about it!, which usually means ‘Don’t tell me about it, because I know all about it already’. The Yiddish I should be so lucky!, in which the real sense is often ‘I have no hope of being so lucky’, has a similar stress pattern with the same sarcastic inversion of meaning as does I could care less.

        • UCLA Owns the Rose Bowl

          Joe, you may be annoying, but you are consistent…

  • Seth

    wake me up when the alford era ends. I want mora mora

  • LTEfan

    Once the game got out of hand, which was in the first couple minutes of the second half, Vitale apparently got bored and wouldn’t stop killing UCLA fans for average home attendance of less than 6,000 in the early season games. Someone should ask Walton if that is still Howland’s fault. But seriously, why wasn’t seating capacity at Pauley reduced when they did the renovation? Basketball attendance figures for a long time now suggest that 10,000+ is sufficient seating capacity for all but one or two games each season.