With NBA preseason games beginning this weekend, 28 former Duke basketball players remain on training camp rosters, spanning 19 different teams.
According to the graphic in the program's tweet on Thursday night recognizing the feat, that count of NBA Blue Devils ranks No. 1 nationally.
But upon closer inspection of the generally 20-man training camp rosters across the league, it seems Kentucky is either in a tie with Duke or one ahead. That depends on whether one counts Shaedon Sharpe as a former Wildcat; he enrolled at Kentucky for the 2022 spring semester and practiced with the team but did not play in any games.
Either way, the NBA Blue Devils and Wildcats are running neck and neck in this regard, with a double-digit lead on all other programs, which has been the case for several years.
Of course, playing for a team in the preseason does not guarantee a spot on the opening night roster (15-player maximum) when the regular season begins in a couple of weeks.
For instance, former Blue Devil center Marques Bolden signed a non-guaranteed training camp contract with the Milwaukee Bucks last week. Also, two-way players Trevor Keels and Jack White may not appear right away for the New York Knicks and Denver Nuggets, respectively, without injuries to guys higher up on their depth charts.
At 5 a.m. ET Friday, the league's preseason slate begins when the Washington Wizards, including former Duke basketball center Vernon Carey Jr., face the defending champion Golden State Warriors in Japan.
That's the only game until 7 p.m. ET Saturday when the Milwaukee Bucks (former Blue Devils Grayson Allen and Marques Bolden) host the Memphis Grizzlies (former Blue Devil Tyus Jones). There are no other games before Sunday. In all, teams play anywhere between three and six preseason games between now and Oct. 14.
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