Thoughts from being there and talking with couple other folks at the game
Starters - Howard, Deebo, Terry, Smith, Sturdivant
First of the bench - Kelly and Franklin (playing the 'center spot')
Also played significant minutes - Maxwell and Moore
Meka was dressed, and out there in warm ups - but did not play (even when up 30 - don't know why - assume injury of some sort)
Fredds and Martynov played @2 minutes at the end
Offense - 60-70 percent of the time in half court - we were running the same 'go through the center at the high post' set with cuts/etc. Franklin is more a threat to do something (drive) than Howard from there - I thought we were going away from that ... but ran it a lot. Rest of the time the center played along the baseline and left high post open for dribble penetration. Did not run any pick/rolls.
Go to man is the open man is what it looks like it will be. Not a lot of turnovers, but too many unforced ones.
Defense - kept subbing to keep legs fresh. Some 2-2-1 full court (usually back to the 1-3-1 zone). More zone than I expected - we're awful small on the wings for this - and ACC teams may exploit it. Corner three was open all night. Man was very aggressive - still struggled to stop dribble penetration. Everyone crashed the boards - Smith getting several on the defensive end. Moore a couple blocks. Expect to see 9 man rotation - TBD how many minutes the 8/9 man get some nights - but expect Maxwell/Moore to get on court each game and if playing well get more minutes.
Deebo - lost all the baby fat - let the game come to him, couple drives to score he could not have done last year. Definitely quicker (still can't guard elite quick guard). Stroke looked great.
Terry - Broke it open with threes in second half. Solid and steady - not a playmaker but moved well without ball to get open and played hard on defense
Kyle - played like he did latter half of last season - protected the ball, used his strength/size on drives
Smith - more under control - but when he gets a rebound it is on the other end really quick -
Howard - solid, not great last night - a lot of offensive rebounds and garbage points - still limited threat catching the ball at the elbow (couple good passes, couple turnovers
Kelly - ran point 5-8 minutes, so the third option there. Most aggressive offensive player on team - couple nice long jumpers
Franklin - expected to see him on floor with Howard - they never played together (he did play with Moore). Shorter than Howard, but strong, bangs, rebounds. Limited on offense but not likley to shoot much outside 3-5 feet - couple nice drives from high post to score.
Maxwell - flashes of good. not sure how quick he is defensively (not much quicker than Deebo) - but good instincts and made couple nice drives
Moore - up and down - couple dumb fouls, couple great blocks/rebounds, couple dumb turnovers/bad shots (got yanked after bad three), several great drives/finishes .... some nights may get 2-3 minutes, some nights might get 15-20 depending if he limits the bad plays - improved, high ceiling - not there yet.
Meka - dressed, did not play (injury?)
Martynov - still growing into body - got pushed around and needs more upper body strength - won't play this year - but big and can shoot it
Freds- great shot - taller than I thought, got beat once on defense - looked fluid and can shoot it offensively, will he be able to play defense at this level - in a way reminded me of Kristen Sjouland in terms of what he does good (and not so good) at this stage - won't play this year but has a lot of potential.
Saturday will be much tougher test - This game came out playing too fast amd not making shots they should've made in first half - played more under control (but fast) and shot it well second half. This team could go off from three and beat couple teams they have no business beating, and then not his side of gym a couple games on open shots and lose to someone they should beat. Saw enough that they could finish at best middle of ACC, at worst - won't be as bad as predicited.