Wendell Carter Jr.'s Mom Upset with Duke over Marvin Bagley III's Recruitment

Alec Nathan@@AlecBNathanFeatured ColumnistJune 26, 2018

The Chicago Bulls first round draft pick, Wendell Carter Jr., smiles during an NBA basketball news conference where he was introduced to Chicago reporters Monday, June 25, 2018, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
Charles Rex Arbogast/Associated Press

Kylia Carter, the mother of Chicago Bulls big man Wendell Carter Jr., admitted Monday that she wasn't happy with the way Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski operated when Marvin Bagley III reclassified as a class of 2017 prospect and committed to the Blue Devils to play alongside her son.

"My initial reaction, I was pissed. And it wasn't pissed because Marvin was coming. To be honest, I felt like that was information that was kept from us," Kylia Carter said, according to NBC Sports Chicago's Vincent Goodwill. "It felt (shady), it felt like my baby was gonna get kicked to the curb. I felt like all of that."

Had Bagley not reclassified, Carter would have been the clear headliner in the Blue Devils frontcourt last season. Instead, Bagley played that role from the outset while Carter served as more of a secondary option before carving out a niche and establishing himself as a sure-fire lottery selection. 

"Humanly, you didn't want it to happen," Carter Jr. said. 

Despite the uncomfortable situation, the 19-year-old put his head down and worked through adversity en route to a standout freshman season that saw him average 13.5 points, 9.1 rebounds and 2.1 blocks per game. 

"I was willing to share the pot," Carter Jr. added, per the Chicago Tribune's K.C. Johnson. "I'm not a selfish player by any means. I wanted to win. To play alongside so many great players at Duke and still hold my own, I thought spoke volumes."

Thanks to that approach, Carter Jr. finds himself locked in as a key building block for the Bulls alongside 2017 first-round pick and burgeoning stretch-big Lauri Markkanen. 

Bagley, meanwhile, will be left to try and pull the Sacramento Kings out of a decade-plus stay in purgatory after he was selected No. 2 overall last Thursday. 

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