Duke basketball champion gets traded in stunning NBA blockbuster

Duke basketball guard Tyus Jones (Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images)
Duke basketball guard Tyus Jones (Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images) /

A Duke basketball champion was traded in the middle of the night. 

News came quickly in the world of Duke basketball on Wednesday night and it all wasn’t good.

Just minutes after Class of 2024 5-star center Flory Bidunga announced he landed an offer from the Blue Devils as he was in Durham for his official visit, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski broke a blockbuster trade in the NBA that send Washington Wizards standout Kristaps Porzingis to the Boston Celtics.

The deal also shipped Tyus Jones, a National Champion with Duke, from the Memphis Grizzlies to the rebuilding Wizards.

Jones averaged 10.2 points, 2.5 rebounds, and 5.2 assists per game, all career highs, on 43.8-percent from the floor and 37.1-percent from 3-point range in his fourth season with the Grizzlies.

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Washington will be the third team for the trusty point guard after he was drafted by his hometown Minnesota Timberwolves with the No. 24 overall pick in the 2015 NBA Draft.

Tyus Jones started 22 games this season with Memphis, out of 80 games played, and was looking to have an elevated role with the team this year after All-Star point guard Ja Morant was suspended 25 games for not adhering to league protocols.

Duke basketball product could be on the move again

The trade didn’t make sense for the Grizzles until Adrian Wojnarowski further explained the details of the deal and revealed that Marcus Smart was shipped from Boston to Memphis in the 3-team trade.

The Celtics also received a 2023 first round pick, No. 25 overall in Thursday’s draft, and a 2024 first round pick while the Wizards also landed a 2023 second round pick, No. 35 overall, in addition to Jones.

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Tyus Jones signed a two-year contract extension prior to last season with the Grizzlies and he could be a major trade candidate this season on a Washington team that is clearly rebuilding after trading All-Star Bradley Beal to the Phoenix Suns earlier in the week.

Jones will make $14 million next season.

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