Lakers again leave Duke basketball champ behind

Duke basketball treasure Quinn Cook will now be looking for a new NBA home.

Five weeks after the Los Angeles Lakers left Quinn Cook behind at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Orlando when moving their championship celebration to the team’s hotel, the franchise has once again left the Duke basketball product to find his own way to where he wants to be.

According to a tweet on Thursday afternoon from Shams Charania of The Athletic, Los Angeles brass decided against bringing Cook back for his contract’s non-guaranteed 2020-21 season.

Charania noted that Cook, who went undrafted out of college and spent his first pro season in the G League, is due $1 million of the $3 million he would have received as a Laker next season.

Last season, his first in Los Angeles, the 6-foot-1, 180-pound guard averaged a career-low 5.1 points and 1.1 assists per game while seeing a career-low 11.5 minutes per game. And Cook was on the court for only six of the Lakers’ 21 playoff games, averaging only 2.2 points and 0.8 assists in 4.0 minutes per game.

Someone will be wise enough to pick up the 27-year-old Duke basketball alum

Surely, someone will look back at Cook’s indispensable role as a senior in Durham while guiding the 2014-15 Duke basketball squad to a national title. Someone should also notice the two rings on his fingers — the other with the Golden State Warriors in 2018 — from only four NBA seasons to date.

Yup, some executives will help Quinn Cook to help them, even if only from the bench, in the only way he knows how: by exhibiting traits of a champion until he becomes one once again.

Stay tuned to Ball Durham for more on Quinn Cook’s next move plus other Duke basketball news and views.