Providence came in sliding from relevance and seeking a big road win to announce that their two-man show wasn't destined for a disappointing end to the season. They didn't get it. Xavier came out gunning behind Remy Abell and ran away and hid before the Friars knew what was going on. Most of the second half was the Myles Davis Triple Double Watch until a big Providence run cut Xavier's lead as low as six, but Xavier's depth was too much for the Friars down the stretch.
Myles Davis is a special player
I wouldn't have traded Myles for Kris Dunn straight up before tonight, and the events of the last 40 minutes did nothing to dissuade me. I put moving Ed off the ball as one of the keys to tonight's game for Xavier. Coach Mack did that to great effect, and the reason he was able to is that Myles Davis can be trusted to do whatever the team needs. He has developed from a knockdown but one-dimensional shooter to an incredibly capable combo guard in whom Coach Mack can trust. His triple-double tonight just showed what Xavier fans have already known about him.
It takes the right matchup to beat Xavier
You have to have enough big men to battle Farrnolds to a draw on the glass. You need enough shooters to pull Xavier out of the 1-3-1 zone. You have to be quick enough to slow down Remy and Ed in transition. You need to be disciplined enough on defense to stay home against Xavier's ball movement. Unless the Musketeers beat themselves (see: Creighton) or are victim to the game of someone's life (see: Tre Campbell), it is going to take a special squad (see: Nova) to knock them off.
Bentil and Dunn may be feeling the load
Providence has had trouble finding a reliable third option to go with their big two all year, and the miles look to be piling up on their respective odometers. Dunn didn't have the burst he needs to make his game dangerous, and Ben Bentil's legs look distinctly heavy on the jumpers he uses to pull bigger men away from the bucket. Anyone who watched the Tu/Cheekz era Muskies go about four players deep knows how much it hurts to rely on just two players.