Duke basketball superstar stuns NBA world as top overall selection

Duke basketball forward Paolo Banchero (Photo by Arturo Holmes/Getty Images)
Duke basketball forward Paolo Banchero (Photo by Arturo Holmes/Getty Images) /

A Duke basketball star had the world stunned at the NBA Draft. 

There was speculation surrounding a Duke basketball star that was put to rest.

There was more speculation that was put to rest.

Then, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski sent shockwaves through the NBA world with his comments about Paolo Banchero.

Wojnarowski suggested that Banchero was seriously in the mix to be the No. 1 overall pick in the NBA Draft minutes before the event started after all but confirming the order of the top three picks would be Auburn’s Jabari Smith, Gonzaga’s Chet Holmgren, and Banchero earlier Thursday afternoon.

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However, the Orlando Magic turned in the draft card to the league and they selected Blue Devil standout freshman forward Paolo Banchero with the No. 1 overall pick in the 2022 NBA Draft, a stunning move to many in the NBA.

Banchero becomes the fifth Blue Devil (Zion Williamson, Kyrie Irving, Elton Brand, Art Heyman) to be selected as the No. 1 overall pick, the most of any school in draft history.

The 6-foot-10 forward averaged 17.2 points, 7.8 rebounds and 3.2 assists per game in his lone season in Durham while being named as consensus Second Team All-American, ACC Rookie of the Year, and a member of the First Team All-ACC.

Rumors come true surrounding Duke basketball forward

There had been chatter throughout the week surrounding the draft placement of Paolo Banchero.

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Many believed that he would be the No. 3 pick to the Houston Rockets but his betting odds began to drop as the week progressed, slowing closing in on being the favorite to be the top overall selection before Thursday afternoon’s news that favored Jabari Smith.

The Orlando Magic had the worst record in the Eastern Conference last season (22-60) and the second worst record in the NBA, only trailing the Houston Rockets (20-62), and have not made the NBA Playoffs since the 2019-20 season.

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