Duke basketball standouts see stocks soar following stellar opener

Duke basketball (Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports)
Duke basketball (Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports) /
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Duke basketball
Duke basketball forward Matthew Hurt (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /

Duke basketball players who saw their stock rise

Jalen Johnson

This goes without saying, right?

Jalen Johnson joins only a select few of Duke standouts who had stellar freshman debuts with 19 points, 19 rebounds, five assists, and four blocks.

Not to mention, the wing was also perfect shooting the ball, making all eight of his field goal attempts, his only 3-pointer, and both free throws.

The one issue with Johnson’s performance on Saturday was the seven turnovers, one less than the entire Coppin State team.

Also, when Jalen Johnson is rolling like that, he either has to demand the ball more or Krzyzewski has to draw up more plays for him because eight shots were just not enough for the freshman phenom.

All in all, a stellar debut for the Wisconsin native.

DJ Steward

Another freshman who makes an appearance on the ‘Stock Up’ list that should go without saying.

DJ Steward led the Blue Devils in scoring with 24 points, but it seems as if that is not being talked about as much because of Johnson’s 19-point, 19-rebound performance.

Coming off the bench, Steward was magnificent and took the game into his own hands in the second half.

The Chicago native ended with his 24 points on 10-of-18 shooting, including 4-of-9 from 3-point territory, in addition to nine rebounds, two assists, two steals, and a block.

Going forward, it will be interesting to see if Mike Krzyzewski keeps DJ Steward coming off the bench or inserts him in the starting lineup following his magnificent debut.

The latter seems like a safe bet ahead of Tuesday night.

Matthew Hurt

We finally welcome a veteran to the ‘Stock Up’ list as Matthew Hurt demonstrated much more aggression to begin his sophomore campaign.

Hurt, who was one of the four veterans to start, was clearly the best returning player on Saturday afternoon with his 12 points, seven rebounds, one assist, and one steal.

An issue for Hurt, who shot 5-of-11 from the field, was foul trouble after being whistled for four fouls in his 29 minutes, something that also plagued the Minnesota native as a freshman.

Matthew Hurt is also going to have to create better spacing on the floor with Jalen Johnson and the guards who are on the court, as Duke will certainly play a lot of small-ball this season with Hurt at the center position.