Basketball College NBA NFL Offseason

The Duke Dilemma

Throughout the course of a sixteen game NFL seasons and 82 game NBA season, there are twists and turns around every corner. All the comeback wins, the miraculous shots and throws, the disappointing teams, and the surprising success, have led up to culmination of each sports’ seasons. The Super Bowl of course wasn’t so riveting unfortunately, but hopefully NBA fans are in store for a spectacular Finals. Nonetheless, the NFL off-season has seen its highlight events with the NFL Draft and much of free agency over and the NBA off-season is just around the corner. Yet, both sports’ off-seasons have had one dominant theme: Dukes of Hazard. However, that means two very different things depending which league you ask…

When the NFL draft was fast approaching in April, Dwayne Haskins seemed like a match made in heaven and the obvious pick. Furthermore, outside linebacker and generational talent on the edge in Josh Allen was a consensus top four pick in the draft and arguably was even better than star Nick Bosa. To Giants fans delight, both were sitting there available when New York was ready to pick at number ten in the draft. However, the Giants shocked much of the league when they opted not for quarterback Dwayne Haskins, not quarterback Drew Lock, not edge rusher Josh Allen, but instead, took quarterback Daniel Jones out of Duke. Much of the Giants fanbase was exasperated and discontent with this move and it rightfully drew large criticism.

The pick of Daniel Jones was an unsavory and distasteful one to say the very least and I’m not at all convinced he’s starter material. This was an instance of a controversial pick and grand draft narrative that holds objectionable connotations with it. Let’s just leave it at this: if Daniel Jones is anything less than spectacular and Haskins flourishes in Washington, the Giants organization will never hear the end of it. However, not all Duke players are created equal…

On the NFL side, off-season narratives have been formed around a Duke player in the draft with a resounding criticism. However, on the NBA side, Duke player Zion Williamson is being heralded as perhaps the most prolific draft prospect of the decade (2000s). Zion Williamson is a 6’7″, 285 lb athlete who moves with blazing speed and freakish athleticism. Williamson doesn’t just finish with power, but also finesse at the rim.

If his size and athleticism isn’t evident enough in his profile, just take it from the airliner companies. He flies better than any craft in the business..

Williamson averaged 22.6 points per game, 8.9 rebounds per game, shot 68% from the field, and even averaged about two steals and two blocks a game. As if that wasn’t enough, Williamson’s 34% shooting from downtown provides a unique stretch big aspect to his game. Athleticism, offensive production, defensive production, generational size, and a true leader and character off the court? What more could one ask for? Zion Williamson truly does bring a generational blend of athleticism and size that is practically never seen in tandem with explosive production like that. Oh, and he did it at the highest level of competition possible, playing for the best collegiate basketball program in the nation. Nonetheless, it is absolutely no surprise why Zion Williamson is regarded as the next face of the NBA and perhaps the greatest young NBA prospect since LeBron James.

The NBA off-season has seen a prolific amount of hype, buzz, and regard surrounding Zion Williamson. In fact, the amount of publicity Zion Williamson has gotten may be more than any other actual NBA player in the last two months… and he isn’t even in the league yet. NBA fans have reason for exhilaration as the future of the league just may be coming to the league soon enough. Also, the Pelicans seemed pretty happy to have the number one pick in the draft via the lottery as their whole front office was literally jumping with enthusiasm when their pick was announced. I heard that Duke guy is pretty good New Orleans…

Nonetheless, though both received very differently, Duke players have had a huge part in both the NFL and NBA postseason headlines. It is yet to be seen how each perform on their respective teams however. The NFL and NBA 2019-2020 seasons just simply can’t come soon enough…

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