FanDuel - WFBC

June 21, 2003

The curse of Duke: Jay Williams pro career may be over after one season. Bobby Hurley, Grant Hill, Jay Williams ... it's getting kind of spooky. Is Duke cursed? If you had a kid with pro potential would you let them go to Duke?

posted by Mike McD to basketball at 12:31 PM - 17 comments

If my kid had pro potential, why would I allow him to go to college?

posted by herc at 12:57 PM on June 21

A little more details are available in the ESPN report (which, given that it is ESPN, I am sure many interested parties have already looked at). Man, it does sound tragic to have such potential potentially chopped down like that. The Duke thing is a little spooky but instead of focussing on the bad outcomes you just have to look at all the other Duke stars that went on to successful careers in the NBA. Guys like.... errr.. umm.... that guy? What was his name?

posted by gspm at 03:39 PM on June 21

Elton Brand?

posted by Mookieproof at 12:00 PM on June 22

Johnny Dawkins! Or that William Avery kid! Actually, Dawkins had a decent pro career...

posted by BobbyLove at 03:12 PM on June 22

yeah, i couldn't think of one but i knew there was one. all i could think of was Hurley, Laettner, G Hill, Boozer, Cherokee Parks (if I've correctly remember them all as Duke players and spelled their names correctly). time will tell on all accounts (the goodness or badness of Duke players in the NBA and the Williams recovery prospects).

posted by gspm at 05:57 PM on June 22

So very sad, my thoughts are with the Williams family. Basketball is far from a priority after something like this.

posted by corpse at 06:37 PM on June 22

Teammate of the year award goes to...envelope please: Marcus Fizer! Teammate Marcus Fizer said he had warned Williams of the potential dangers of riding a motorcycle. "I told him before, that may not be something that you want to do in your career at this time. Any number of things can happen to you,'' Fizer said Friday. "I tell all these young guys who like to ride motorcycles that. A lot of them still do it, though.'' I'm glad you were proven right, Marcus. So important to point out at a time like this. WAIT: Marcus Fizer is in the NBA??? On a serious side (after my concern and thoughts for Jay and the Williams family), has he violated his contract? Was there, possibly, a clause preventing a played from dangerous activites, such as riding a motorcycle. see: Jeff Kent, 2002 Giants

posted by msacheson at 12:26 AM on June 23

haha! I thought the exact same thing about Fizer's comments. Boozer may end up having a great career. Elton Brand is obviously a good one.

posted by crux at 08:19 AM on June 23

Msacheson: I would be tremendously surprised if he didn't. Just about everyone nowadays has a "don't be a moron" clause. What I wonder is if Williams turns out to be finished, how do invoke the clause without it being a public-relations nightmare? I guess it's just business, but the Bulls would look like real jerks cutting this guy off while he's lying in a hospital.

posted by wfrazerjr at 08:34 AM on June 23

oh, Battier too. i think that was the guy i was thinking of when i wrote Boozer. some of these newer guys in the NBA are still too fresh to be able to make a real judgement about. there are degrees or career success between a bomb, a bit player, a solid player and a star, etc. as far as cutting off the contract - with these young basketball players making loads of money they MUST have some sort of insurance in place in case an injury ends their career. an injury of this type though (carelessness?) might not be covered....

posted by gspm at 08:44 AM on June 23

Danny Ferry has been in the league for about 13 years now, and Mike Gminski had a nice career as well. Charlie Board's site has a nice section on the pro careers of former ACC players.

posted by mbd1 at 09:27 AM on June 23

Bulls would look like real jerks cutting this guy off while he's lying in a hospital. is it possible to cutoff somebody you've made a multi-millionaire?

posted by danostuporstar at 10:06 AM on June 23

I'd say the top Duke players right now are Elton Brand and Corey Maggette (Maggette had a nice season last year). Battier had a good rookie season but a really lame sophmore campain (9.7 pts, 4.4 reb). Battier's numbers were down across the board expect for shooting percentages. I wouldn't expect a big career out of Battier. I know people always talk about Duke never producing good pros, I was just wondering if people will start talking about the unusual luck surrounding Dukies. As far as Ferry, sure he's been in the league for 13 years but he's never been close to what was expected. For comparison, think of all the pros that came out of UNC during that period. Jordan, Worthy, Perkins, Daugherty, Kenny Smith, Vince Carter, Antwan Jamison, Stackhouse, Rasheed, George Lynch, and Rick Fox. Maybe the comparison with UNC is unfair, but when you think about how even the two schools have been at the college level, it's strange that there is such disparity at the pro level.

posted by Mike McD at 10:18 AM on June 23

Disparity is not really that strange. Dean Smith was a great guy, great recruiter, but only a so-so game coach. Coach K is the best in the business at getting college kids to play at a championship level.

posted by cg1001a at 08:29 PM on June 23

Except Duke was getting just as many McDonalds All American's (i.e. good recruits)

posted by Mike McD at 09:59 PM on June 23

Also, until recently, UNC encouraged kids to go pro, whereas it seemed to be tradition for Dukies to stick around through graduation. No telling how many more titles UNC would have if Jordan, Wallace, Stack, et. all played all four years the way Hurly, Hill, Laetner and company did.

posted by herc at 09:59 PM on June 23

CNNSI has a column about the Duke Curse that rehashes various things raised here and adds some new analysis.

posted by gspm at 03:01 PM on June 28

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