Duke has invited NBA personnel to practices on Oct. 19 and Oct. 25 but will then block NBA scouts and executives from attending future practices in 2016-17, sources confirmed to ESPN.com on Tuesday night.
The Vertical first reported that Mike Krzyzewski's program would host two "pro days" next month and bar NBA personnel from attending subsequent practices during the upcoming season. One source disputed the "pro day" or combine labels often attached to similar events, however, and said the Blue Devils will simply hold two practices at Cameron Indoor Stadium that NBA personnel can attend, not pro days engineered to showcase their talent and impress reps from the next level. Krzyzewski's program discussed the idea with NBA coaches and executives during the offseason, according to the source.
Duke isn't the first school to invite NBA personnel en masse to campus prior to a season.
John Calipari hosted Kentucky's and college basketball's first NBA-style combine prior to the 2014-15 NBA season. More than 90 NBA scouts and execs attended the event in Lexington, Kentucky, which was broadcast on ESPNU. Kentucky will host its third combine on Oct. 9 and 10.
Four Wildcats, including No. 1 pick Karl-Anthony Towns, were lottery selections in the 2015 NBA draft, and six Kentucky prospects were taken overall.
Duke could have similar success in the 2017 NBA draft. Harry Giles (No. 2), Jayson Tatum (No. 7), Marques Bolden (No. 13), Grayson Allen (No. 28) and Frank Jackson are all listed on Chad Ford's 2017 Big Board.
League sources told The Vertical they were concerned about the timing of Duke's events. The second practice for NBA personnel will be held the same night the NBA season opens, and the Duke events are scheduled six days apart.
Kentucky's combine allows scouts to make one trip to Lexington, since it's held on back-to-back days. But if Krzyzewski's intent is to limit the frenzy around his team by banning NBA personnel from practices following next month's practices, this might be the right move.
Calipari said Kentucky's combine helped his players learn where they stood in the eyes of NBA execs prior to the season, so they could work on their weaknesses, and it also limited the number of scouts who attended Kentucky practices after the event.
"Instead of being five or 10 scouts in our practice, it just got lighter," Calipari told ESPN.com. "Now I'll have four teams in a week. We were having 10 teams in a day watching our practice, and then it becomes a zoo."