CHARLOTTE - The 2017-18 ACC Media Day was held today on Charlotte, North Carolina. The Blue Devils were represented by Grayson Allen who fielded questions on incidents from a season ago to becoming a leader on this years team.
Allen has reshaped his body and is lighter than a season ago. He also has the look of a player who has put the aforementioned incidents in the past while taking on a leadership role.
On whether he thought he would be in the NBA
When I came in as a freshman I thought I would be here for years. And I have always dreamed of playing four years at Duke. I don;t want to give up any opportunities of playing in Cameron.
On whether he though their would be as much hype at Duke...
On Yeah, it's a lot of attention, a lot of hype. Everything with us is either great or terrible but as a Duke basketball player they've kind of equipped us to deal with all the attention that comes. I mean, if I were at a different school I doubt if I would get the same amount of attention, but that is just an opinion. I didn't truly know how much, but when you choose Duke there is going to be a lot of media attention.
When did you finally come to grips with what happened a season ago?
This summer. I have a new role and I have to really adjust to it and I have to understand that basketball is just a very small part of my life. So when I come into the basketball realm, I need to have fun with it. At the end of the day, I am playing a game I love and get to do it at a high level. At the end of my freshman season was the highest of highs and last year was the lowest of lows but you learn to deal with it.
On his chemistry with Trevon Duval and Gary Trent
I think it is going good. We all do different things on the court but it is just about learning to play with each other. I think we are all excited to finally play against someone else instead of beating the crap out of each other. I think is going to be great, especially with how fast Tre is and how good of a shooter Gary (Trent) has become.
You ran the point guard a season ago. Will you still do that at times this year?
Yeah, I think so. I can still run the offense. We have a ton of different lineups we can put in. And you never know, you have to be ready for foul trouble and God forbid injuries -- everything. So, we have practiced with a lot of different lineups, like three guys over 6-10 being in the game to smaller lineups where you have someone like Gary playing the four. So we are prepared for a lot of different things.
You have never played with this many talented big men. What is that like?
They are all unique because of how athletic they are. One of the things I had to get used to was just throwing the ball up there and letting them go get lobs and learning to play with them. People tend to worry about spacing when there are a lot of bigs on the floor, but then you see Marvin (Bagley) and Wendell (Carter) can step out and shoot it. Even Marquese (Bolden) cans step out to the three-point line now, so it is a really talented group.
You look lighter....
I have been running a lot and trying to get in top shape. I am back down to my freshman year weight but I am stronger than I was then. My sophomore year I was close to 220 and that was a little but to big.