The bell of the Blue Zone stock exchange has rung again, meaning it's time to take a look at who is rising and falling with their performances for Blue Devil sports teams. Each week, the Blue Zone will look at whose stock is on the rise and whose stock has taken a hit from the week in the world of Duke athletics.
Bull Market—Trending Up
Kyrie Irving: The former No. 1 pick had a huge week for the Cleveland Cavaliers on and off the court. Irving dominated in the Cavaliers’ four-game sweep of the Atlanta Hawks, scoring at least 19 points every game and making 12-18 3-pointers. In the press conference following the sweep, Irving could not stop laughing with teammates Kevin Love and LeBron James after Love fielded a question, giving reason to believe that Cleveland’s mid-season chemistry issues are in the rearview mirror.
The former Duke point guard’s limited edition Ky-rispy Kreme shoes have also been a major hit around the nation since the truck carrying the shoes departed from Nike's headquarters in Oregon earlier in the week.
Deemer Class: In his last regular season college game, the senior midfielder went out in impressive fashion as his Blue Devils prepare for the postseason. Against Boston University, Class netted five goals and added an assist, kick-starting an 11-1 run that ended in a 15-8 Duke victory. Class was named the ACC offensive player of the week for his performance against the Terriers and pushed his single-season school record for goals scored by a midfielder to 49 with the NCAA tournament approaching. The Blue Devils will need Class to continue his hot shooting, as they will matchup against No. 7 seed Loyola in the first round of the NCAA tournament Saturday.
Duke vs. Kentucky men's basketball recruiting battles: With the two blue-blood programs fighting for top-25 center Marques Bolden, Wildcat head coach John Calipari subtly denounced Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski’s recruiting tactics in a three-part series entitled "The vision of the program: Where we're going," on his personal website. Calipari’s comments came on the heels of a Louisville Courier-Journal report on top-20 Class of 2017 guard Hamidou Diallo, who detailed the differences in the recruiting pitches between the two programs and noted that the Blue Devil coaching staff told him he would be "set for life" if he came to Duke, an idea that Calipari called "preposterous." Now, the two teams are battling for the top-ranked 2016 recruiting class, an honor that could hinge on Bolden’s decision.
Bear Market—Trending Down
James Shields: The pitcher formerly known as “Big Game James” will now be remembered in infamy by millions of New York Mets fans. Not only did the San Diego Padres' right-hander find himself on the losing end of a 6-3 game after allowing four runs in six innings, but Shields also served up a home run to opposing pitcher Bartolo Colon, who made his first career trot around the bases at the age of 42. Colon made the most of his four-bagger, taking more than 30 seconds to round the bases.
To make matters worse, a Topps limited edition baseball card of Colon’s hit was released for 24 hours and set record sales for the company. Needless to say, Shields was on the wrong end of a lot of laughs this past week.
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