We take a break from our skills development series (don't worry we'll be back to it next month) to put a spotlight on one of the brightest young stars in the NBA.
Luka Doncic has become one of the NBA's best players at just 22 years old. Doncic has the Dallas Mavericks thinking upset against the higher-seeded LA Clippers in just his second playoff run.
While his star continues to rise, let's get to know Doncic a little bit more with some interesting facts.
1. Luka Doncic is from Slovenia.
Doncic grew up in Slovenia which is located in Central Europe. Like Canada, Slovenia is known for its mountains and scenic lakes. The national sport in Slovenia is soccer which Doncic played, but eventually, quit because he got too tall for the game. Doncic began playing basketball for Olimpija, a Slovenia club team, at the age of 8.
2. Luka Doncic was just 16 when he played for Real Madrid
Yes, you read that right, when Doncic made his debut for Real Madrid in the 2015-16 season, he was just 16 years old. He became the youngest player to make his professional debut for Real Madrid and the third-youngest player to make his debut in the history of the ACB, the top basketball league in Spain and one of the top leagues in the world outside of the NBA.
3. Luka Doncic was drafted by the Atlanta Hawks
Although he plays on the Dallas Mavericks now, Luka Doncic was actually drafted third overall by the Atlanta Hawks in the 2018 NBA Draft. Doncic ended up on the Mavericks later when he was traded to them for Trae Young who the Mavs selected with the fifth pick in the same draft.
4. Luka Doncic's favourite player is LeBron James
Doncic has said many times that his favourite player is LeBron James. He also admired Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, and Ben Simmons before coming into the NBA.
Could Luka Dončić be the best player in this year's #NBADraft?- NBA TV (@NBATV) June 19, 2018
Get to know the Slovenian phenom ⤵️ pic.twitter.com/NM1jFYiGEa
5. Luka Doncic's award case is already filled
Before coming to the NBA, Doncic became the youngest player ever to win the EuroLeague MVP at just 19 years old. He also added a EuroLeague Final Four MVP, ACB league MVP, three ACB Championships and one EuroLeague title.
He hasn't stopped collecting accolades in the NBA either, he won Rookie of the Year in 2019, has been named an All-Star twice in 2020 and 2021 and made the All-NBA First Team last season. If he continues on his ascent he'll need more than one trophy case when his career is over.