Duke men's basketball 2023-24 player preview: TJ Power

TJ Power is one of four freshmen on this year's Duke team.
TJ Power is one of four freshmen on this year's Duke team.

 As the beginning of basketball season is near, the Blue Zone provides a detailed preview of each player on Duke men's basketball's 2023-24 roster. We've already looked at Stanley Borden, Spencer Hubbard, Neal Begovich, Jaden Schutt, Christian Reeves and Jaylen Blakes. Next up is freshman forward TJ Power:  

TJ Power

Year: Freshman 

Height: 6-foot-9

Position: Forward

Last year’s stat line: N/A

Game Breakdown: Head coach Jon Scheyer seems to have placed a major emphasis on 3-point shooting with his first two recruiting classes as the Blue Devils’ head coach. As such, freshman forward TJ Power exemplifies the type of player Scheyer wants on his team. Tied with Sean Stewart as the tallest member of the self-proclaimed “Freshman Four,” Power combines elite height with an exceptional sharpshooting ability, making him a superb spot-up shooter. The Shrewsbury, Mass., native’s talents will allow Duke to space out the floor on offense without being at a size disadvantage on the defensive side of the ball.

However, Power is more than just a one trick pony. The 2022 Massachusetts Gatorade Player of the Year can score at all three levels, and is especially effective when posting up smaller defenders. Despite what his last name would suggest, Power’s post game relies more on finesse than brute force, as he often fades away to hit contested jump shots or shifts past his opposition to finish strongly at the rim. Beyond his scoring capabilities, the four-star forward is also an exceptional passer and distributor of the basketball, thanks to his high basketball IQ and desire to get teammates involved. 

Role on the Team: Despite his clear talent, Power will most likely not end up as a consistent starter for the Blue Devils this season. Returning sophomore stars Kyle Filipowski and Mark Mitchell seem immovable at the starting forward positions, and Stewart will also provide heavy competition for the former Worcester Academy standout. 

However, even if Power isn’t a regular starter, he has the potential to be an effective piece off the bench and a key part of Duke’s rotation. Power’s 3-point proficiency makes him a scoring threat whenever he gets on the court, and his unique offensive skill set means he can fill up the stat sheet even with limited touches. Scheyer has substantial ambitions for this upcoming season, meaning the Blue Devils will likely need to employ every weapon they have if they hope to fulfill their lofty goals. 

NBA Player Comparison: NBA veteran Danilo Gallinari’s game resembles that of Power’s. Gallinari stands just one inch taller than the Duke freshman and possesses many of the same offensive capabilities. The Washington Wizard has made a career as a prolific three-way scorer from the forward position, and much like Power, is especially deadly from beyond the 3-point line. Although Gallinari has never been one of his team’s superstars, his consistency and selflessness have made him an essential piece of every organization he’s been a part of. Power has the potential to be even better than Gallinari, and even if he doesn’t show that this season, he can still be an important part of the Blue Devils’ quest for a sixth championship. 

Projected stats: 18.7 MPG, 7.1 PPG, 2.9 RPG, 1.0 APG


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