Following surgery, healthy Grayson Allen ready to lead Duke

After a junior season where his play on offense dropped precipitously from his all-American sophomore campaign, Grayson Allen appears back in solid health entering his senior season.

The Duke guard had surgery in May to address a left ankle injury that slowed him most of the 2016-17 season.

According to Duke officials, the procedure cleaned out the injured ankle and should allow Allen to regain the explosiveness missing last season.

With a foreign trip to Dominican Republic set for Aug. 17-24, Duke is allowed to hold up to 10 practices before departing. Allen was on the court with the Blue Devils when the held their first practice on July 21 and is said to be moving at full speed with no restrictions.

“We had him away from basketball for about three months,” Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski said on an ESPN podcast with Seth Greenberg. “He had a minor operation on his ankle. He’s now fully recovered, so his athleticism is there. He’s happy, he’s in shape and he’s sharing that.”


That’s important news for the Blue Devils

Grayson Allen saw his production fall off last season. Even though Duke won the ACC championship, Allen’s shooting percentages on 3-pointers and all shots overall dropped. After scoring 21.6 points per game as a sophomore, he scored only 14.5 points per game last season.

But Krzyzewski said Allen is “refreshed” following his rocky sophomore year. Allen injured his right toe in the season’s third game. That injury slowed him into December. Then he tripped Elon’s Steven Santa Ana during a Dec. 21 game. Krzyzewski suspended Allen for one game and stripped him of his team captaincy.

Next came the nagging left ankle injury. By the time the postseason arrived, Allen was a reserve.

In total, Allen started 25 games, missed three games and came off the bench in nine others.

This season, he’s far and away Duke’s most experienced player as the only player on the roster with more than one collegiate start. The Blue Devils backcourt features Allen along with freshmen Trevon Duval, Gary Trent, Jr. and Jordan Tucker.

“I’m really happy where Grayson is at emotionally, physically,” Krzyzewski said. “He’s really excited about leading these guys.”


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