ESPN’s Eamonn Brennan is doing a pre-NBA draft mini-series where he looks at the college basketball teams that have produced the best pros on the modern draft era. Duke came in fifth.
Here’s his case of why Duke could be ranked lower.
“There are a few very good players on this list, combined with a handful of solid career veterans. But there are a lot of busts here, too. There’s no value judgment there — whether a player is a bust in the pros or not can either be a compliment to his college coach or an insult, depending on your perspective — but the list is the list. “
Following is his list of the top six NBA draftees since 1989.
Top Five NBA Draftees Since 1989
1. Grant Hill (1994)
2. Elton Brand (1999)
3. Carlos Boozer (2002)
4. Kyrie Irving (2011)
5. Luol Deng (2004)
Sixth man: Corey Maggette (1999)
I don’t know about you, but I would take that lineup over any team. Having a team with the likes of Kyrie Irving, Luol Deng, and Grant Hill, looks nearly unbeatable.
In all fairness he also gave a statement of why Duke could be ranked even higher.
“The Blue Devils might not have a Tim Duncan figure looming atop their list of pro products, but there is no downplaying the depth involved here. Corey Maggette has been a totally frustrating pro, a guy with a tweener skill set who seemed to engage only when his next contract was at stake. But he has averaged 16.0 points, 4.9 rebounds and a couple assists per game over a 13-year career, which is hardly worth sneezing at. Likewise, Mike Dunleavy has carved out a role as a reliable wing shooter with size. J.J. Redick — widely considered the classic Duke bust archetype — is one of the best shooters in the league, a valuable and capable piece plenty of teams would love to have. Shane Battier’s numbers don’t look great on paper, but that’s never what Battier’s been about, and he’s had a solid career (and will play huge minutes in Game 7 of the NBA Finals tonight) as a result. Dahntay Jones has had plenty of moments. “
Kentucky was ranked just ahead of Duke at the third spot.
Here is a list of what other teams have been ranked.
19.) Ohio State
17.) Michigan State
12.) Georgia Tech
9.) Wake Forest
What are your guesses for who will get the top three spots? I would say North Carolina, Georgetown, and UCONN.
All in all, I think we were ranked at about the right spot. What do you guys think? Are we too high, too low, or just right? Let us know in the comments.
Also, be sure to read the entirety of the article here. It’s a great read.