Duke Basketball Has Lottery Level Trio in Marvin Bagley III, Wendell Carter Jr., Trevon Duval


champions classic

When Duke basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski refers to you as “our most talented player,” as he did tonight, you know that you’re special. Coach K. said this of Marvin Bagley III following his side’s 88-81 win over #2 Michigan State in Chicago.

The top ranked Blue Devils lost Bagley after just ten minutes, to what Krzyzewski said was an eye scratch.

The eye became very red, but it doesn’t appear to be a long term, substantial injury. Coach K. said that Bagley was taken out of the game mostly as a precaution, and that he believed he’ll be fine tomorrow.

Bagley (6-10, 230 pound forward from Phoenix) finished with six rebounds (five offensive) and four points. Duke managed to grab 25 offensive rebounds against Michigan State, and that was something which extremely irked Spartans coach Tom Izzo. He was very pissed off in his postgame news conference, and that was one stat that he focused in on. What’s amazing is how well Duke was able to beat a Michigan State team like that on the boards, without Bagley. All in all, it was definitely the night’s main event, with Kansas versus Kentucky certainly the undercard, despite its primetime slotting.

That’s obviously very unfamiliar territory for both of those programs.

The Blue Devils improved to 11-1 against Tom Izzo.

Bagley is no doubt a NBA Draft lottery level talent, and his 49 points through his first two games is a Duke record; tied with Jabari Parker.

He’s also the first freshman in Duke history with double doubles in each of the first two contests that he played in.

mike krzyzewski grayson allen

It’s interesting how Krzyzewski was so much against the concept of one-and-done initially; because now he’s all in with it.

It’s almost like John Calipari was the trail blazer of this concept, and now Coach K. has, in comedy parlance, “stolen his bit.” He’s won national titles with it too. He could again this year, and then see a trio of one-and-done freshmen in Bagley, Wendell Carter Jr. and Trevon Duval. The last two of that troika played in the McDonald’s All-American game on this very same floor in March.

They both looked at home in this one too, as both players recorded double doubles. Trevon Duval (from New Castle, Delaware, IMG Academy in Florida), a 6-3, 186 lb point guard, had 17 points and 10 assists.

Carter (from Atlanta, Ga., Pace Academy) had 12 and 12, like Bagley, grabbing five on the offensive end.

Carter, at 6-10, 259, is best suited to bang bodies on the low block, but he has also brings stretch four capabilities to this Duke basketball team.

duke basketball blue devil mascot jabari parker

Go here for the link to our latest NBA mock draft.

Duval was ranked as the nation’s best point guard coming in this class, and he’s an explosive, powerful playmaker and excellent finisher. However, he’s not the finished product as he still needs to develop as a shooter to complement his ability to penetrate.

This Duke basketball team is definitely leaning heavily on their freshmen, and those rookies are certainly talented enough to carry the burden.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net and TheBank.News, which is partnered with News Now. Banks, a former writer for the Washington Times, NBC Chicago.com and Chicago Tribune.com, currently contributes regularly to WGN CLTV and the Tribune company’s blogging community Chicago Now.

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