Duke is a legendary college basketball player, featured in NBA 2K21. He was born in New York, and is the father of Junior.
Regarded very highly for his aggressive play, leadership and accountability on and off the court, his reason for not making the draft was simply because he lacked the height and "explosive" dunking ability of NBA Point Guards, when pressed by his son.
At least 3 years before the main story, Duke passed away; this serves as the basis of NBA 2K21's MyCareer story, "The Long Shadow". His leadership and accountability skills are continually mentioned characters like Alex Williams, including NBA and G-League commentators.
According to Archie Baldwin, Duke continued to try getting into the NBA afterwards; and apparently the continual pressure to get in caused a massive amount of stress for Duke. However, during the cutscenes, Duke is much more mellow.