Position: Point Guard/Shooting Guard/Small Forward
Date of birth: 28/Feb/1999
Current club: Real Madrid
Where do you start? If you looked at the career highlights and awards section of Wikipedia you would be forgiven for thinking that Doncic was a seasoned veteran who had been dominating Europe for the last few seasons, EuroLeague champ, Final Four MVP, EuroLeague MVP, EuroLeague First Team, 2x EuroLeague Rising Star, 2x ACB Champ, Liga ACB MVP, All-Liga ACB First Team, EuroBasket Champ and EuroBasket All Tournament, instead its the resume of a 19 year old who has probably just completed one of the best years in the history of sports. A positionless guard who can run the point or shooting guard slots, but can slide into a small and sometimes even power forward role.
If you doubt his ability against NBA level talent because you think EuroLeague isn’t good enough (it is by the way), just watch his highlights vs Kristaps Porzingis at EuroBasket, the way he comes off a screen, Porzingis with the switch, he takes a micro second to assess the situation, crosses over and then back’s Porzingis into the post, a little step back to create just enough space before finishing with a nice right handed hook shot, later that game with 3 minutes left in the game, 88 – 83 Slovenia in the lead and looking to head into the semi-finals, another switch, he starts to drive before a step back and cross, Porzingis recovers, another step back behind the three point line and lets the shot fly over the outstretched arms of one of the NBA’s best young big-men. He finishes with 27 points and 9 rebounds and leads his team to the next round of the tournament.
USA guys watch Doncic and instantly throw the athleticism card, okay hes not a 6ft 8 small forward whos going to win you dunk contests… but hes a 6ft 8 combo-guard-forward who is going to get you wins! surely that is more important. He may struggle a little against the faster guys in the NBA, but hes young and he still has the work ethic to improve on those weaknesses and show why he is the top prospect to come out of Europe in the last 10 years.
This years mock drafts have been utterly crazy, no-one seems to have a gauge on who should go where, there are reports surfacing that Sacramento are hot on Michael Porter Jr, meaning Luka drops down to 3rd. Others have Ayton at number 1 yet others are higher on Mo Bamba and Jaren Jackson Jr.. its all over the place.
Bleacher Report currently has Luka dropping down to number 4 overall with the Memphis Grizzlies, NBADraft.net has him down at 5th to the Dallas Mavericks while ESPN also has him at number 4.
For me, the Suns could be the new home for Doncic, they hired the Slovenian national team coach, a fact that has been significantly overlooked by Draft Twitter, big-men tend to take longer to develop and the Suns already have 2 work-in progress Centers split between Dragan Bender and Alex Len (yes I realize Ayton is an upgrade over both, but is it number 1 priority), Devin Booker isn’t a true Point Guard and Josh Jackson can plsy a little bit of small forward and power forward, Luka can slot in as a combo guard/forward who can bring the ball up, distribute and score.
A line up of Elfrid Payton, Devin Booker, Luka Doncic, Josh Jackson and Alex Len would be a fast young squad who can run the floor and play fast. What ever team takes Doncic he will be the most prolific European players to ever play in the NBA and we could one day see him go down as the greatest European of all time.
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