If you follow a team closely, you get a sense of what the new players can do before they arrive. That ‘s really true at Duke where the freshman classes typically are really impressive.
And as intriguing as they all are, in some ways Kyle Filpowski, subject of today’s Chronicle player profile, is perhaps most intriguing.
Filipowski is in some ways the very model of a modern big man. He has guard-like skills and can shoot from three point range - thanks, Euro hoops! Dirk Nowitzki’s influence continues. He also falls into a Duke tradition of stretch fours that, well, stretches back to Danny Ferry with stops at Laettner Land, Singler City and Dunleavy-on-Cameron along the way.
We’re not sure yet how athletic he is but that isn’t everything. People used to think that Jayson Tatum and Kyrie Irving weren’t overly athletic and they’ve both done okay.
The bigger question with Filipowski is where he fits. Dereck Lively is likely to start which would put Filipowski at forward and probably something close to a high post. Modern basketball doesn’t restrict players like that, so guys will play to their strengths. Defense is a question mark still, because it’s conceivable that he could be a liability if he gets quicker, more athletic players.
We haven’t seen him enough to know that would be a problem, just curious to see how he does.
Whether he starts or not though, Filipowski has a lot to offer and is going to be a major factor for Duke.