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Coach K Picks His Two Greatest Players

And inadvertently raises an interesting question

Duke V Indiana
Grant Hill and Christian Laetter are Coach K’s choices for Duke’s best players ever.

Mike Krzyzewski has talked about stuff like this before so this is not really new but we wanted to raise a question here.

He names his two best players ever and they are Grant Hill and Christian Laettner.

Laettner is the most accomplished - inarguable - and Hill he regards as the most talented.

Our question is simple: where does Zion Williamson rank in terms of talent?

Hill and Laettner were four-year players and that skews things a lot, and rightly so. It’s hard to argue with a four-year career against one that lasted just one.

However, Williamson’s talent is inarguable. So here’s the question: is he more talented than Hill (for a fun thought exercise, how would they have fared guarding each other)?

It probably depends on how you define it. In terms of explosiveness and leaping ability, and certainly strength, Williamson wins, hands down.

In terms of basketball talent, the ability to play all over the court and influence the game in many ways, you could make an argument for Hill. Time tends to dull recollections, and of course Hill finished at Duke in 1994 so many people never witnessed his greatness and can’t understand his greatness. We watched him break up a 4-on-1 break against UNC and it was stunning. Who does that?

It’s an intriguing argument but like the Jordan vs. LeBron (or Bill Russell or Wilt Chamberlain) argument, there’s a bias towards the most recent star. It doesn’t mean Williamson was necessarily more talented although he unquestionably has a unique combination of talents.