David Duke declared for the upcoming 2021 NBA Draft via his Twitter and Instagram, officially hiring an agent. With the hiring of an agent, Duke will not just be testing the NBA waters but will officially be foregoing his remaining collegiate eligibility.
David Duke has a breakout year during his Junior season and enjoyed some accolades and milestones along the way. Duke was named to the 2nd All-Big East Team, as well as an Honorable Mention All-American. Along with Nate Watson, Duke joined the exclusive 1,000 point club for the Providence Friars. The two of them became the 48th & 49th players to eclipse the millennial mark. Duke ultimately finished with 1,051 career points across his three season with the Friars, passing Eric Williams (1,001), Ray Flynn (1,025), Derrick Brown (1,034), Mike Pascale (1,035), & Jerry Scott (1,045). He currently sits 44th on the all-time scoring list for PC.
Here are Duke’s statistics for this past season and where they ranked in the Big East Conference overall.
37.1 mpg (1st)
16.8 ppg (5th)
4.8 apg (2nd)
5.35 D-Rebs per game (8th)
1:1.51 Asst to TO ratio (8th)
79.2% FT (9th)
38.9% 3-Pt FG (11th)
1.19 spg (11th)
Granted, there were some issues with consistency that poked their head out as the season played out but the ability, size, and work ethic are all there to succeed at the next level. Duke has shown the ability to score in bunches, rebound, hit threes & free throws, dish out assists, and play lock down defense on the other end. His finishing at the rim took a bit of a hit this past year but it appeared at times that Duke was trying to force his offense in those situations, thinking he needed to carry more of the scoring load on his shoulders. He can play the point and the 2, and standing at a legitimate 6’5”, has the stature to be able to guard both positions on the defensive side of things.
I’m not sure how much another season at Providence would have helped his aspirations of playing in the NBA to be honest. Much of what NBA Scouts look for in players coming into the league is based on the potential of what that player could potentially develop into. Duke has the tools to have a high ceiling and leaving now could actually help in the case that Scouts can still factor potential into their analysis of his game. Does that make sense? I think it does, but I could be wrong (definitely wouldn’t be the first time). There are obviously aspects of his game that he could have sured up with one more season but I don’t think they would have changed all that much about his professional prospects.
If there were 3 things I think that would help him at the next level, they would be these.
- Get a little stronger to be able to finish through contact at the rim.
- Be able to get his shot off quicker. He has drastically improved his 3-point shot but it takes a while to go through his entire shooting motion. Quicker and bigger opponents at the next level could take advantage of that.
- Screw a third thing. With how hard of a worker Duke is universally known to be from those who have coached and played with him, he is going to improve in any area that isn’t a strength as of today. I believe that to the fullest.
I wish nothing but the best of luck to David at the next level professionally, and with everything else as well…and you should too.
“We are appreciative of everything that David has done for our men’s basketball program. David has always had a goal of playing in the NBA. He is taking another step toward that goal and we wish him all the best. Over the past three seasons, David has worked very hard to improve himself and help make our team better. He has always represented the program in a first-class manner. We look forward to watching his professional career and seeing all the great things that he will achieve.”– Coach Ed Cooley