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UNC 85 Maryland 69

Wrist Watch 2012.

It was all going to so well until five minutes into the game when John Henson was fouled and landed on his wrist. He would return but was unable to catch and hold the basketball properly so Henson would end up sitting the rest of the game. His absence led to some odd lineups and Kendall Marshall's two first half fouls meant more Stillman White than we are accustomed to seeing. The end result was an uneven game and Maryland hanging around a little more than they might have otherwise. The good news is Henson's wrist doesn't appear to be broken and the Tar Heel bench had a huge game which hopefully will inspire confidence for upcoming games.

After Henson went out, UNC got probably his best game as a Tar Heel. James Michael McAdoo had 14 points and eight rebounds in his longest stint of the season(29 minutes.) P.J. Hairston also played well chipping in nine points and hitting a three. Tyler Zeller put in his usual solid effort 14 points and seven boards despite getting his fourth foul midway through the second half. Harrison Barnes  and Reggie Bullock led the Heels with 15 points. Barnes did not shoot well, particularly from the free throw line but was very active grabbing seven rebounds and collecting three steals. Bullock was 3-of-5 from three and is starting to have an impact on the offensive end.  Then there was Kendall Marshall who kicked off his ACC Tournament by breaking the ACC single season assist record and ending the day with 13 points, 12 assists and six turnovers. Marshall attempted a number of passes that were questionable hence the six miscues. Despite that, Marshall continues to be a threat to both score and get the ball to the other offensive options.

UNC got the win and played fairly well doing it despite the loss of Henson. Depending on what happens with his wrist it may work out well for the Heels if McAdoo steps his game up as a result. However, Henson having a serious wrist injury would be bad news for the NCAA Tournament. If I had to speculate, the wrist is probably jammed or sprain and probably will be sore for the rest of this weekend but could be okay for next weekend. One issue is Henson uses his left hand quite a bit, especially on hook shots. While he is right-handed, Henson would be significantly less effective without his left hand being 100%.

Just like in 2009, we watch and wait for news on the status of a key player's body part.