3 Duke basketball players who should cash in by sticking around
All the young Duke basketball guns better not move on.
Call it a modern-day Duke basketball rite of spring. Shortly after the end of a season, several still-eligible Blue Devils announce their intention to leave Durham via an early declaration in the professional ranks or a dive into a transfer portal which no longer requires first-timers to spend a year in margin.
This round will be no different, except the remnants could be an all-time low for returning stock players. Yes, it’s possible that new head coach Jon Scheyer will lose all the last members of this latest team’s seven-man primary rotation in the coming weeks, not to mention a piece of the deep end of the bench. .
On the other hand, consider that college basketball has emerged from its freshman year of the NIL era, where some of the nation’s top talent landed six-figure deals with their name, image, and likeness. Therefore, stay-or-go decisions are expected to be more complicated for those holding relatively uncertain draft stocks.
Freshman sensation Paolo Banchero is not part of this group. No, he’s almost certain to be a top three pick in the 2022 NBA draft.
Judging by all the scorecards, fellow Blue Devil rookie AJ Griffin also looks like a likely lottery pick or, at the very least, a surefire first-rounder. The same goes for second 7 footer Mark Williams.
In other words, Banchero, Griffin and Williams would be well advised to leave now if their goal is to secure a guaranteed NBA contract without further delay or risk.
A few unknowns among Duke’s basketball reserves
You’d think senior Joey Baker, with one year of eligibility remaining due to the NCAA’s gift of an extra year to every 2020-21 entrant in the country, might be looking for a transfer destination where he can contribute on a regular basis. After all, he fell completely out of rotation in the latter stages of this past campaign.
And given that Duke freshman guard Jaylen Blakes has never seen truly meaningful action despite his four-star rating as a prep, it would be understandable these days if he’s also looking for greener personal pastures. elsewhere.
Meanwhile, graduate reserves Theo John and Bates Jones have exhausted their eligibility.
As for Michael Savarino, Keenan Worthington, Spencer Hubbard and Stanley Borden, well, they may all return. However, keep in mind that they are either extras or initially arrived at Duke as extras, and neither have yet shown enough promise to earn minutes as the Blue Devils outside of the variety of waste.
That leaves three essential pieces that we haven’t mentioned here yet. So let’s do that now, one at a time, explaining why it might be in everyone’s financial interest to stay another year and partner with the program’s top-ranked incoming recruiting class…