When the Deacs take on the Blue Devils on Wednesday night, they will be up against one of the best wing players in the country, Grayson Allen. The 6'5 guard is having an outstanding season so far averaging 20.6 points, 5.4 rebounds, and 3.6 assists per game. He leads the team in points and assists. Allen probably has one of the best motors in college basketball, and hustles more than any player I can remember watching. He often sacrifices his own body for the Devils, whether that be crashing into the lane to score, laying out for a loose ball, or taking a charge on the defensive end. The Deacs will need to be ready for his energy and physicality if they want to be able to mitigate his impact on the game.
Offensively, Allen is definitely at his best when he is taking the ball aggressively towards the rim, where he is so good at both avoiding defenders and finishing through contact. He is averaging 7.1 free throws per game as a result of taking the ball strong to the basket, and is shooting 87% from the free throw line this year. It will be crucial that the Deacs defend Allen without sending him to the line, because he is almost automatic from the stripe.
Allen is also a very unselfish player that sees the court well. When he beats his man off the dribble and the help comes, he is able to find the open man and kick out for open 3s.This makes Allen off the dribble probably the most deadly weapon that Duke has this year.
While Allen is best when he is attacking, he has improved his shooting ability this year. Allen is 4th on the team in 3 pointers attempted and is shooting 39% from beyond the arc. He has also made significant improvements in his ability to make shots curling off of a screen and pulling up off the driblle, making him a very difficult player to defend.
The last thing I will point out about Grayson Allen is that when he scores in double figures, Duke is 12-0. When he is held to single digits, the Blue Devils are 0-2. If Wake Forest wants to come away with a win against Duke on Wednesday, stopping Allen appears to be their best bet.