Mike Krzyzewski's Knee Surgery Went 'Smoothly,' Duke Coach in 'Good Spirits'

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistAugust 13, 2017

GREENVILLE, SC - MARCH 17: Head coach Mike Krzyzewski of the Duke Blue Devils directs his team against the Troy Trojans during the first round of the 2017 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at Bon Secours Wellness Arena on March 17, 2017 in Greenville, South Carolina. (Photo by Lance King/Getty Images)
Lance King/Getty Images

On Sunday, Duke basketball released an update on Mike Krzyzewski's knee surgery, and the news was positive: 

Duke Basketball @DukeMBB

Dr. Bolognesi: "The surgery went very smoothly. Coach is in good spirits. We hope to get him walking as early as this afternoon." 🔵😈🐐 https://t.co/bQ98XmcrJv

Krzyzewski's knee replacement surgery forced the Blue Devils to miss a scheduled exhibition trip to the Dominican Republic, per Jeff Goodman of ESPN.com, who noted that the surgery was the sixth for Coach K in the past 17 months after he "also had his left knee replaced in April 2016, underwent a hernia surgery a month later and had two operations on his left ankle that June."

He also missed seven games last season after having back surgery.  

"After three consecutive days of working with the team, it became clear that the condition of my knee wouldn't be sustainable through next season," Krzyzewski said of missing the trip in a statement, per Goodman. "The best course of action is to correct the problem now rather than later, when our team would be more profoundly impacted."

Athletic director Kevin White concurred. 

"Unequivocally, this is the absolute right thing Mike should do, and at precisely the right time," he noted.

Having a healthy Coach K is vital for Duke, especially in a season where the team attempts to replace several talented players, including leading scorers Luke Kennard and Jayson Tatum. The Blue Devils have plenty of incoming talent, however, highlighted by top recruits Wendell Carter, Trevon Duval and Gary Trent Jr.

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Grayson Allen will also return for his senior season, making Duke one of the early favorites to cut the nets next season. Nonetheless, Coach K's health will remain a major storyline for the program going forward.

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