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Duke star Kyle Filipowski has declared for the NBA Draft after earning All-American honors during a standout sophomore season, he announced Friday. The 7-foot center is a versatile big man and potential lottery pick with the mobility and skill to flex his game out to the perimeter on both ends of the floor.

Filipowski proved durable during his two years under coach Jon Scheyer, starting all 72 of Duke’s games over the past two seasons. The former five-star prospect could have turned pro after winning ACC Rookie of the Year as a freshman but opted to return and continue developing his game. As a sophomore, he earned second-team All-American honors from CBS Sports.

“After careful consideration and consultation with the people closest to me, I have decided to declare for the NBA Draft,” Filipowski wrote in a social post announcing his decision. “This has been a lifelong dream of mine, and I am incredibly grateful for the opportunity to pursue it. Thank you, Duke Nation. Your unwavering encouragement and belief in me have fueled my determination to reach this point. Whether you’ve cheered for me from the stands, followed my career online or simply sent positive vibes my way, please know that your support has meant the world to me.”

Among Filipowski’s most appealing attributes are his flashes of perimeter shooting — he hit 34.8% of his 3-point attempts this season — and his defensive mobility. Filipowski was rated Duke’s top defender in the 2023-24 season by evanmiya.com.

Kyle Filipowski’s NBA Draft projection

In a relatively weak draft class, Filipowski appears to have a higher floor than some of his peers. Some general managers might view him as a “tweener” who is too small to bruise with NBA centers and not agile enough to play power forward. But enterprising scouts and executives will see the skill packaged within Filipowski’s big frame and appreciate how he could be a matchup problem for opponents at the next level.

Filipowski ranks No. 15 in the 2024 NBA Draft Prospect Rankings from CBS Sports. He landed at No. 15 in a recent mock draft from Kyle Boone.

“Filipowski led Duke in scoring and rebounding this season and showed significant improvement from his freshman to sophomore year in the process,” Boone wrote. “The 7-footer has a versatile skill set that figures to be a safe projection to the NBA.”

Impact on Duke

Getting Filipowski back for a second season was a bargain for Duke and coach Jon Scheyer. Having him around for a third season would have been unfathomable. But Scheyer is headed into his third season with another blockbuster signing class on the way. The Blue Devils’ 2024 haul is ranked No. 1 nationally by 247Sports and is headlined by No. 1 overall prospect Cooper Flagg. Three other top-20 prospects are part of Duke’s class, including five-star center Patrick Ngongba II. With Filipowski, Mark Mitchell, Ryan Young and Christian Reeves all departing, the Blue Devils will look drastically different around the rim next season.



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