Parker declares for NBA Draft
As expected, Jabari Parker is leaving Duke after one outstanding season.
The 6-8 Parker, a first-team all-American as a freshman for the Blue Devils, is entering the NBA Draft, Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski announced Thursday.
Parker led Duke in scoring (19.1 points) and rebounding (8.7) this season on his way to winning the Wayman Tisdale Award as national freshman of the year.
“Jabari could not have been better,” Krzyzewski said. “He is the epitome of what you would want a basketball player to be – outstanding everyday on the practice court and in the classroom and a very humble young man,” said Krzyzewski. “He had a fantastic freshman year and is so deserving of the opportunity to play in the NBA and follow his dream. It was an honor for us to have him in our program and he will always be a part of our family here at Duke. We will be on the Jabari Parker team the rest of our lives and we know Jabari and his family will be on the Duke team for the rest of their lives.”
Parker is the first Duke freshman to lead the team in scoring and rebounding. He joins Corey Maggette, Luol Deng, Kyrie Irving and Austin Rivers as players to leave Duke for the NBA after just one season.
“Coming out of high school, I knew that Duke was going to be a great fit for me and it ended up being one of the best experiences of my life,” said Parker. “I cannot thank Coach K enough for all his love and guidance. I had the opportunity to pick his brain throughout the year and it really paid off. I have learned how to be a man on and off the court and to be strong mentally going into practices and games. I appreciate him for challenging me to be better each and every day.”
Parker is projected to be selected among the top three picks in the NBA Draft, which is June 26.