Five Duke basketball players likely to bolt after season

Duke basketball (Photo by Peyton Williams/UNC/Getty Images)
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Duke basketball forward Matthew Hurt (Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports) /

Current Duke basketball talent likely to leave come spring: Matthew Hurt

Even though Matthew Hurt would have stood little hope of hearing his name at the 2020 NBA Draft, his decision to return to Durham came as a bit of a surprise to many fans. Some figured the 6-foot-9 stretch-four sharpshooter might transfer or try his luck at a pro career somewhere after seemingly residing in Mike Krzyzewski’s doghouse toward the end of his freshman year.

Instead, Hurt manned up to his shortcomings, beefed up his frame, and ramped up his practice sessions while quarantining back home in Minnesota during the summer. Now, the fruits of the 20-year-old’s labor are in abundant supply, to the tune of 18.8 points and 7.6 rebounds per outing as the only Blue Devil who has started all five games across the team’s 3-2 start.

Hurt attacks the basket with more confidence. He’s becoming more vocal. He’s making quicker decisions with the ball in his hands. He’s getting on the floor for loose balls. He’s no longer a frequently pancaked defender. Like it or not, though not every mock draft shows him as a first-rounder, he is not likely to be at Duke this time next year.