Wednesday, January 23, 2013
Is Rasheed Sulaimon back on track?
By Joe Kaiser
Could the benching of Rasheed Sulaimon for Duke's game last week against Georgia Tech have turned around the freshman's season?
Sulaimon has suffered through a brutal shooting stretch that started after Christmas and continued through the NC State game, where he went 0-10 from the field and finished with 4 points in the Blue Devils' only loss of the season.
Relegated to bench duties against the Yellow Jackets, the highly touted guard finally busted out of his slump, an encouraging sign for Duke and its coaching staff.
“I think [benching him to start the game] was necessary,” assistant Jeff Capel told DukeChronicle.com. “He hadn’t been playing as well, so he lost the right to start. I thought he handled it very well and in a very mature way. He approached it in that he was going to come out and fight ... He did some really good things against Georgia Tech.”
Sulaimon's 15-point game versus the Yellow Jackets was the most since a 16-point effort against Cornell on Dec. 19, and may be just the spark he needed to get some confidence back in what had been a reliable offensive game through the first 10 games of the season. It'll be interesting to see if he's back in the starting lineup for tonight's big ACC matchup with Miami.