Duke Freshman Harry Giles Declares For NBA Draft Despite Short, Injury-Riddled Season
Duke freshman forward Harry Giles is entering this year’s NBA draft, the university announced Tuesday.
Duke Freshman Harry Giles Entering 2017 NBA Draft
The 6-foot-10 18-year-old, who missed two seasons in high school due to a pair of torn ACLs, was out for the first 11 games of this season because of a third knee injury. Giles was ranked as the No. 1 player in the freshman class by ESPN.
A spokesman for the Blue Devils, Gary Walton, says Giles plans to hire an agent.
“Playing in the NBA has been my goal for as long as I can remember, and I’m so excited to take the next step in that journey,” the power forward said in a statement issued through the school. “My time at Duke has been a dream come true.”
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— Duke Basketball (@DukeMBB) March 28, 2017
Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski praised Giles in a separate statement.
“With his uplifting personality and love for the game, Harry Giles has been a joy to coach,” Krzyzewski said. “He is only beginning to scratch the surface of how good he can be on the basketball court. Harry has an exciting NBA future ahead of him and we are here to fully support him as a member of our brotherhood.”
Giles averaged 3.9 points and 3.8 rebounds per game this season. He is now the 11th player in the Blue Devils’ history to declare for the draft after his freshman year. Teammate Jayson Tatum was the 10th last week. Each of the previous nine were first-round picks, with eight of them going in the lottery.
Several NBA executives told ESPN will probably be selected in the latter half of the round, and ESPN Insider Chad Ford ranks Giles as the No. 14 prospect in the 2017 NBA draft.
Duke was eliminated from the NCAA Tournament by South Carolina in the second round on March 19.
NC State point guard Dennis Smith Jr. is also reportedly entering the draft. Smith Jr. averaged 18.6 points, 6.2 assists and 4.6 rebounds while shooting 45.5 percent from the floor and 35.9 percent from beyond the arc in his only season as a player for the Wolfpack.
DURHAM, NC – JANUARY 04: Harry Giles #1 of the Duke Blue Devils reacts after drawing a foul against the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets during the game at Cameron Indoor Stadium on January 4, 2017 in Durham, North Carolina. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)
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