Parker made the official announcement today, saying that it was a difficult decision but the choice was clear.
Which environment -- college or the NBA -- offers me the best opportunity to grow as a basketball player?
Which environment -- college or the NBA -- offers me the best opportunity to grow and develop off the court?
The answer to both questions is undeniably the NBA.
Although Duke fans might not be ready to hear that, it's absolutely true.
Another thing Parker said also rings particularly true:
Again, he's 100% correct. The longer he plays in college, the less he'll be able to actually make money playing professionally. As messed up as it sounds, that is (and should) be his main priority.
He could stay at Duke for 1, 2 or 3 more seasons. He could mature as a player and provide tons of entertainment to Duke fans free of charge, while the university and the NCAA reaps all the benefits. But he'll really hone his skills in the NBA, and he'll do it while making huge sums of money with which he'll be able to support his family for years.
Also, let's keep in mind: Staying at Duke wouldn't exactly guarantee that he'd be a better NBA prospect when all is said and done. Duke is renowned for great college success, but not exactly for grooming NBA players.
Parker will almost certainly be selected with one of the top 3 picks in the draft. He made the right decision. There's no doubt.