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Top Five Duke NBA Players: Who You Got?

This is a pretty good list but we have some minor quibbles

2021 NBA Playoffs - Brooklyn Nets v Milwaukee Bucks
Kyrie Irving driving during the NBA Playoffs

Over at The Duke Chronicle, Max Rego ranks his Top Five NBA players of the Krzyzewski era.

First, a gentle correction: Luol Deng was the second Blue Devil to leave after his freshman year, not the first. The first of course was Corey Maggette in 1999.

That said, here’s his list 1-5

  1. Kyrie Irving
  2. Grant Hill
  3. Elton Brand
  4. Shane Battier
  5. Luol Deng

We might flip Hill and Irving because before his injuries set in, who would you have rather had? Hill was just a step or two down from Michael Jordan and even after his injuries crippled his career, he reinvented himself as a defensive stopper.

We’d also have to consider Brandon Ingram here. Rego takes Zion Williamson and Jayson Tatum out of consideration because their careers are so new and maybe Ingram could be excluded for the same reason. But he’s consistently improved and with the Pelicans, he’s become a major force.

We’d also keep an eye on RJ Barrett, Gary Trent and Cam Reddish for future revisions.