Duke basketball: Better buckle up for the devilish Buck

Duke basketball guard Grayson Allen (Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports)
Duke basketball guard Grayson Allen (Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports) /

A Duke basketball champ will soon delight the same folks he once tormented.

Next season, Duke basketball product Grayson Allen will likely serve as one of the first few men off the bench for the reigning champion Milwaukee Bucks. After all, he was the highlight piece in a recent trade that sent Sam Merrill plus a pair of future second-round picks to the Memphis Grizzlies for his services.

The irony here is that his new fanbase largely overlaps with that of the Wisconsin program he crushed as the heroic Blue Devil freshman off the bench in the 2015 title bout. There’s no doubt that Wisconsinites have since been at the head of the line to satisfy Allen-bashing cravings whenever the ultra-aggressive shooting guard has made headlines due to some beef or dirty play.

The potentially significant impact from adding this Duke basketball great

Keep in mind that Allen, a former 2018 late first-round pick who spent his rookie season with the Utah Jazz before the past two campaigns in Memphis, was a top reserve for a 2020-21 Grizzlies squad that sneaked into the playoffs. He averaged a career-high 10.6 points, 3.2 boards, 2.2 assists, and 0.9 steals in 25.2 minutes per game while shooting 39.1 percent from deep.

Even throughout his team’s first-round 4-1 exit at the hands of the No. 1 seed Jazz, the former four-year Blue Devil regularly arrived on the scene to provide timely sparks.

And had hopeful-hero Dillon Brooks more often recognized Allen’s hot hand during a few critical possessions when the series was still in doubt, there’s no telling how things might have turned out.

Now, the 25-year-old is moving to Wisconsin in what looks to be the beginning of his prime.

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Bucks/Badgers faithful better buckle up, though, for the ever-intense Grayson Allen Show could only rouse a Twitter storm one minute but perhaps set in motion another trophy delivery the next.