Austin Rivers Enters NBA Draft 2012

Duke freshman guard Austin Rivers has entered the NBA draft after making the formal this week at his home in Orlando.

The Blue Devils’ coaching staff knew in the latter part of the season that Rivers was going to leave, multiple sources with direct knowledge at Duke told

Rivers will become the fourth player under Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski to play one season for the Blue Devils before leaving for the NBA. The other three were Corey Maggette, Luol Deng and last season’s No. 1 draft pick, Kyrie Irving.

Rivers, son of Boston Celtics coach Doc Rivers, is expected to be a first-round draft pick.

Doc Rivers said his son has yet to hire an agent.

“Not yet,” he said. “… I heard the reports, but he hasn’t decided anything yet.”

When asked if he’d helped Austin make the decision, Rivers said: “At the end of the day, all you can do with all your kids, or any kid in this situation, is give them as much input as you can, then you try to let them make the decision. They have to make it; you can’t make it for them.”

However, Rivers did call the possibility of having Austin on the Celtics “interesting … very interesting.”

If Austin Rivers, or any underclassman who has declared for the draft, wants to change his mind, he has only until April 10 under a new NCAA rule. Last year, the deadline was May 8.

However, the NBA is retaining its April 29 deadline for a player to declare his eligibility for the draft, and its June 18 deadline to withdraw from the draft.

Rivers, whose memorable buzzer-beating 3-point shot over North Carolina’s Tyler Zeller catapulted the Blue Devils to a stunning 85-84 win Feb. 8, averaged 15.5 points, 3.4 rebounds and 2.1 assists at Duke.

The Blue Devils also are waiting on the decision of junior forward Mason Plumlee, who has decided to declare for the draft but won’t actually send in his paperwork until he learns if he’s a likely first-round pick. Duke’s staff is gathering information for him before April 10.

The Blue Devils still have plenty of guards, with the return of Seth Curry, Tyler Thornton, Andre Dawkins and Quinn Cook. And Duke fully expects incoming freshman Rasheed Sulaimon to be an impact player.

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