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Duke Recruiting: A Kentucky Perspective On Dereck Lively

Wherever he goes, he’s got the potential to be great

HIGH SCHOOL BASKETBALL: JUN 06 Pangos All-American Camp
 LAS VEGAS, NV - JUNE 06: Dereck Lively II drives to the basket during the Pangos All-American Camp on June 6, at the Tarkanian Basketball Academy in Las Vegas, NV
Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Not too long ago, Emoni Bates was seen as the great rising star in college basketball. Then Jalen Bates moved past him. And now, Dereck Lively is rising unbelievably fast, moving from an interesting target to a Top Three talent in a very short period of time.

This story from tells us that Lively had established himself as a defender but broke his foot and took that time to work on his shot. Now he’s a solid all-around player and apparently a great teammate as well. Rob Brown, who runs Lively’s Nike team, says this:

“The coaches don’t try to slow him up. But he is an ultimate teammate. He does what he’s supposed to do on the court. I would like for him to go a little bit outside of himself sometimes. But he’s just a consummate teammate. He’s like, ‘Well, if a shooter’s open, I’m gonna get him the ball.’ And we’ll say, ‘You could have turned and dunked on a couple guys.’ And he’ll say, ‘Yeah, I know, but he was open.’

“He’s a really good teammate. None of our coaches tell him that he should be passing the ball more or anything like that. It’s just the way that he plays and what makes him special. He’s a real coachable kid. And he just wants to win. He values winning over anything.”

That’s a pretty good shorthand description of Duke Basketball culture really. He’d be a great fit.