Duke basketball: Jayson Tatum ‘excited’ after Cooper Flagg commitment

Duke basketball forward Jayson Tatum (David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports)
Duke basketball forward Jayson Tatum (David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports) /

Jayson Tatum is very happy that the Duke basketball program secured Cooper Flagg. 

It always felt like destiny for Cooper Flagg to become a member of the Duke basketball program and that became reality on Monday morning when the top player in the senior class announced his decision to join the Blue Devils.

Flagg expressed that Duke was always his “dream school” throughout the recruiting process and he modeled some of his game after Blue Devil standouts Jayson Tatum and Grayson Allen.

Tatum even joined Duke head coach Jon Scheyer and the rest of the coaching staff for one of Flagg’s AAU games this summer and has been a major centerpiece for the program since rising to stardom in the NBA immediately after he was drafted.

Now, it seems certain that the 4-time All-Star will be on campus much more next offseason to work with Flagg and the rest of the Blue Devils.

ALSO READ: Dan Hurley takes subtle shot after Cooper Flagg decision

“It was great. Excited. He’s a hell of a player,” Tatum said on Monday prior to the Boston Celtics game.

“He’s going to be in the [NBA] here soon. Happy for him and his family.”

Duke basketball newest recruit already in minds of NBA scouts

Cooper Flagg is currently projected to be the No. 1 overall pick in the 2025 NBA Draft and one of the major  reasons why he reclassified into the 2024 recruiting class from 2025 was his age qualified him to enter the draft in June 2025.

“Obviously happy for Duke but it’s like, where else would you go? That’s where all the best players go,” Tatum added.

ALSO READ: Cooper Flagg’s father speaks on ‘close’ recruitment

Cooper Flagg joined Josh McRoberts, Jahlil Okafor, Marvin Begley III, and RJ Barrett as the No. 1 overall recruits to commit to Duke.

Jayson Tatum was the No. 4 overall player in the 247Sports Composite rankings in his 2016 recruiting class behind Josh Jackson, Harry Giles, and Markelle Fultz.

Tatum became the No. 3 pick in the 2017 NBA Draft and is arguably the best player to come out of that draft class.

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