With the 2018 NBA Draft fast approaching, it is time to get to know one of the names at the top of the prospect list that many still don’t recognize. Regarded as one of the most complete international prospects in recent history, Real Madrid guard and reigning Euroleague MVP Luka Doncic is projected to be one of the top picks in this week’s draft.
The 6-foot-8 19-year old from Slovenia has done it all for his Real Madrid team this year, including leading them to a Euroleague championship title. Doncic, who averaged 16.0 points, 5.2 rebounds, and 5.0 assists per game on the season was not only named league MVP, but also the Final Four MVP, just one year after leading the Slovenian team to the Eurobasket championship.
After declaring for the NBA Draft back in April, Doncic spent the following months being projected to go in the first two picks, but his stock has begun to slide a bit as of late.
With that in mind, here is some background information on the Slovenian phenom.
High School: N/A
What makes Doncic such a fascinating prospect is that he is the youngest player to ever appear in Liga ACB (the pinnacle for Spanish league’s). Doncic began playing for Real Madrid as a professional at the age of just 16, foregoing his option to play in high school. While he wasn’t an immediate starter, he was able to get time and make an impact for his team coming off the bench, but it wasn’t until the 2016-17 season that he was able to begin getting solid playing time and even began starting some games.
That year, he averaged 7.8 points, 4.4 rebounds, 3.7 assists per game
College Career: N/A
After a strong 2016-17 campaign, Doncic became a full-time starter for Real Madrid during the 2017-18 season, and it seems to have paid off. The team won the Euroleague championship, Doncic was named league MVP, and now he is looking like a consensus top pick in this year’s draft. With all of that being said, there is still a cloud looming over this situation.
Doncic declared for the draft back in April but has still given no statement as to when he plans on coming oversea’s to actually play in the NBA. This has caused many GM’s to become somewhat skeptical of the European star, and as a result, his draft stock has dropped off in the past few weeks. As the draft grows closer, it will be interesting to see what Doncic has to say in terms of when he feels he will be ready to come over, and just how much this will impact where he gets drafted.