This year’s NBA Draft was an amazing one, and we’re already starting to see the impact of its players: Luka Doncic has already made a strong case for entering the conversation as the best of the 2018 class, while Deandre Ayton and Michael Porter Jr. are also in the conversation. Of course, at least one other impactful rookie is coming this summer.
The NBA Draft Lottery got underway this year, and while the mock drafts are flooded with the names of the first 11 picks, one name remains conspicuously absent: Luka Doncic. The 19-year-old accomplishments of Luka Doncic are hard to ignore. He led Real Madrid to the ACB Finals in his last season, where he was the MVP and helped the team to the championship. He led Slovenia to the EuroBasket title last summer, and he is a Finals MVP. He also won the EuroLeague Player of the Year, beating out other top NBA talents.
As the youngest player in this years 2018 NBA Draft, Luka Doncic created a buzz with his impressive play during his time at Real Madrid and his NBA Combine performance. For many, he is the next big star on the rise, but for others, he is just another flash in the pan. We will know soon enough what kind of star he is, but until then, here are some thoughts on his potential impact at the next level:. Read more about where is luka doncic from and let us know what you think.
Dallas Mavericks superstar Luka Doncic is only in his third year in the NBA and analysts are already praising him. They all agree that Doncic will be the new face of the league in the coming years. With the Mavs, the Slovenian has it all: The talent, intelligence, looks, resourcefulness and fighting spirit that only special people have.
And now for the question that’s on my mind: In how many years will fans and analysts include Luka Doncic in the conversation about the greatest of all time?
It’s not as easy as it sounds. Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant and LeBron James have gone through hell to be considered the greatest in their sport. Jordan conquered the NBA early on with his high-flying jump shots and scoring ability on offense. However, he suffered several playoff losses before winning his first title. Although Kobe had already won three titles at the age of 24, the pressure was on him to win a title without Shaquille O’Neal by his side. LeBron, for his part, was the most talked about basketball player on the planet. From day one, people expected him to be great. Thanks to him for proving why he is the chosen one, but it also took him a few years to win the title.
Doncic has his own story. He was the third pick in the 2018 NBA Draft, but few American fans knew that. You could say that this relative anonymity has benefited him in some ways. No one expected him to be great. That’s why everyone is so excited about him, like he’s the best thing that ever happened to basketball. But the attention and hype seem to be catching up with him. Especially since they lead the series 2-0 against the Los Angeles Clippers. No one knows for sure if the Mavericks can oust the Clippers or win the title this year or in the next. But like the talented Slovenian’s great predecessors, it’s a safe bet that Luka Doncic will be criticized and blamed by fans and basketball pundits alike if he lets time pass without winning a title.
Looking at Doncic’s game, there doesn’t seem to be any weakness in his attack. Many comparisons have been made. Some consider him the basketball IQ of LeBron James and Magic Johnson. Some even noted the intensity of Jordan or Kobe. Of all the players compared to Luka Doncic, Larry Bird seems to be the closest. Both play primarily at the point guard position. The amazing thing is that they don’t seem to have the athletic ability that most NBA players have, but they still manage to destroy their opponents.
But if you look closely at Luka Doncic, he seems to want to do everything for his team. This leads to many inversions, some of which are rather sloppy. He averaged 4.28 turnovers per game, the second highest in the regular season behind Russell Westbrook. This can be explained by the fact that he is the main manager of his team. But he needs to fix that little hole in his game.
But defensively, Luka Doncic has a lot going for him. There is no doubt that it has improved significantly over the years. He uses his big stature in post-up situations. He also learned to use his quick hands and high IQ to reflect the ball on his way to an interception. However, he is nowhere near the level of those who are contenders for the title of world champion.
All of Luka Doncic’s improvements on the defensive end weren’t good enough to be noticed or, more importantly, to make his team win. The Mavs had a 112.3 defensive rating in the regular season, 21st place. Despite the stats and clips showing Doncic’s vastly improved defense, the real mark of a great player is his ability to influence his entire team to play better. Luka Doncic hasn’t been very good in this regard so far.
We can’t blame Luka Doncic for all his shortcomings. He did everything he could to get the Mavs back to the playoffs. But when you look at their lineup, it’s clear that they have a lot of work to do before they become legitimate title contenders.
Compliments to the management for pairing Luka Doncic with another star, Kristaps Porzingis. The emergence of Tim Haraway Jr. was also a good sign. But the team is still missing something. Should they spend more time together? Do they need more veterans who have been on championship teams?
Given what we know about the Slovenian, in how many years will Luka Doncic be in the conversation as a GOAT? It is generally believed that basketball players peak in their mid to late twenties.
Luka Doncic is only 22 years old, but he has been playing since he was 16. But given the glaring deficiencies in his game, you can’t say Doncic is already in his prime or close to it. There is no doubt that he will work on these obligations. But the next question is: Will the Mavs organization follow suit?
Assuming we see a better version of Luka Doncic in four or five years, can the Mavs surround him with the players he needs?
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