Duke basketball: 10 best NBA careers in Blue Devils history

Duke basketball legends Kyrie Irving and Jason Williams (Photo by Lance King/Getty Images)
Duke basketball legends Kyrie Irving and Jason Williams (Photo by Lance King/Getty Images) /
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The Duke basketball program has put stars into the NBA and we discuss who is the best. 

Former Duke basketball players are taking over the NBA but the debate as to which professional Blue Devils produced the best career is not easy.

The entire Duke program has produced a total of 106 NBA Draft picks, but Mike Krzyzewski saw 73 players selected in the NBA Draft since taking over as the team’s head coach in 1980.

Of the 73 players selected, 46 have been first round picks and 29 taken in the lottery.

Duke has also had five players selected as the No. 1 overall pick, including Paolo Banchero who was last year’s top overall pick, and four No. 1 selections in the common draft era, the most of any program.

The Blue Devils have produced at least one draftee in 23 of the last 25 NBA Drafts, including 38 first round picks over that time span.

There is no right or wrong answer when trying to determine who the best Duke player in the NBA is but the stats and awards make for an interesting conversation.

Greatest Duke basketball careers in NBA: Honorable Mention

Jeff Mullins will be the only player on this list that did not play for Mike Krzyzewski during his time at Duke.

Mullins was a Blue Devil from 1961-64 in which he was then the No. 5 overall pick of the St. Louis Hawks and during his NBA career he was a three-time NBA All-Star from 1969-71 and an NBA Champion in 1975 as a member of the Golden State Warriors.

He scored 13,017 points during his 12 year career and averaged 16.2 points per game.

The rest of the list will not be easy to rank but, alas, we will give it our best shot at trying to narrow things down.