Duke basketball: Grayson Allen stock nears an all-time high

Duke basketball guard Grayson Allen (Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports)
Duke basketball guard Grayson Allen (Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports) /

Duke basketball gem Grayson Allen is helping perhaps the world’s best team.

Emotionally speaking, Grayson Allen may never eclipse the high he felt as a Duke basketball freshman in sparking a second-half knockout of Wisconsin in the 2015 title bout.

But when it comes to Allen’s value on the sport’s highest level, the 26-year-old is now arguably enjoying an all-time high. Ironically, he’s doing so while delighting many of the same Wisconsinites he disheartened as a Blue Devil.

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Earlier this week, Allen inked a two-year, $20 million contract extension with the Milwaukee Bucks. They acquired the 6-foot-4, 200-pound shooting guard in July via a trade with the Memphis Grizzlies.

A solid Milwaukee Bucks debut from Duke basketball legend Grayson Allen

On Tuesday night, the new Buck drew a starting nod — for the defending champs, mind you — in the team’s eventual season-opening 127-104 win over the visiting Brooklyn Nets.

Grayson Allen was on the court for 28 minutes. The fourth-year pro, who went No. 21 overall at the 2018 NBA Draft, finished the night with 10 points, four rebounds, six assists, two steals, and zero turnovers. He shot 3-for-10 from the field (all from deep) and 1-for-1 from the charity stripe.

Although those stats aren’t entirely mind-blowing, consider that Allen’s plus-minus of +23 was the game’s second-highest mark. It trailed only that of Milwaukee’s franchise player, Giannis Antetokounmpo, who tallied a +25.

Yes, all the present-day signs say that the Milwaukee Bucks are in the early stages of falling in love with Allen, their welcomed fiery sniper.

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Across the 2020-21 regular season, his second campaign with the Memphis Grizzlies, Grayson Allen was a starter in 38 of his 50 appearances. The Florida native averaged a career-high 10.6 points and knocked down 39.1 percent of his 3-point attempts.