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Duke Loses Fourth Player To NBA Draft Declaration

Trevor Keels of the Blue Devils.

CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA - FEBRUARY 23: Trevor Keels #1 of the Duke Blue Devils shoots during a game against the Virginia Cavaliers at John Paul Jones Arena on February 23, 2022 in Charlottesville, Virginia. (Photo by Ryan M. Kelly/Getty Images)

As expected, Duke has lost several players to the NBA Draft in the three weeks since the Blue Devils' season ended at the Final Four.

There was no drama with Duke's first three early entrants; Paolo Banchero, Wendell Moore and Mark Williams were all widely projected to leave school early. However, freshman guard Trevor Keels seemed to have more of a true decision to make after an up-and-down season.

On Saturday, Keels announced that decision. He is entering the draft, joining Banchero as a "one and done" prospect.

Freshman wing A.J. Griffin is also expected to declare by the end of today's deadline, giving Duke five players in the draft pool, with three of them being "one and dones."

"Playing at Duke was a dream and I feel that now is the time to chase another dream," Keels wrote. "I am excited to enter my name in the 2022 NBA Draft."

A five-star recruit, Keels announced himself to the college basketball world with a 25-point performance in Duke's season-opening win over Kentucky. However, he also endured his share of struggles throughout the season, shooting just 41.9% from the field, 31.2% from three-point range and 67% from the free-throw line.

Keels did put together some strong performances down the stretch though, scoring 27 points against Pitt in the second-to-last regular season game, 14 in an ACC Tournament win over Syracuse and 12 in the second round of the NCAA Tournament against Michigan State.

The physical 6-foot-4 guard saved his best for last, scoring 19 points on 8-of-14 shooting in Duke's Final Four loss to UNC. With Keels off to the pros, look for new Blue Devils head coach Jon Scheyer to secure additional shooting guard help via the transfer portal.