Luka Doncic was picked by the Hawks, but he is reportedly on his way to Dallas. 

By Heather Boehm
June 21, 2018

The Hawks selected European phenom Luka Doncic with the No. 3 pick in the 2018 NBA draft, but Atlanta reportedly intends to trade his rights to the Mavericks. 

In exchange, the Mavericks will reportedly select for the Hawks at No. 5. Dallas will also give Atlanta a future first. 

Doncic turned heads while playing for Real Madrid over the past five years. While in Spain, he was awarded the MVP of the Euroleague. He is the youngest player to have received that honor. 

In his 2017-2018 season, Doncic put up impressive numbers that made him a top five draft pick. He averaged 14.5 points, 4.6 assists, and 5.2 rebounds per game. Doncic not only lead Real Madrid to their 10th Euroleague title, but he also was the driving force behind Slovenia's first ever European Basketball Championship in 2017. 

SI.com's Jeremy Woo broke down Doncic's strengths and weaknesses. 

The Hawks are making this pick on behalf of the Mavericks, and will trade down to No. 5. Doncic is a major coup for Dallas, who have coveted him all season. He will essentially take the torch from Dirk Nowitzki as the Mavs push back toward competing for a playoff spot, and pair with Dennis Smith to give the Mavericks a dynamic pair of young playmakers. Many feel Doncic will be at his best with an athletic, slashing guard to help put pressure on opposing defenses, and he will have a chance to do that in Dallas. The Mavericks will give up a future first to get this done, according to reports, but given the way they valued Doncic, it’s worth it. Grade: A

 

Strengths

• Plus-plus basketball comprehension and floor vision. Feels out plays one or two steps ahead, and tall enough to see over the defense. Great in the pick-and-roll. Almost too intelligent to not succeed.

• Great size for his position. Similar dimensions to Joe Johnson. Comfortable handling the ball and running a team. Could also move over to the wing and make an impact, but you want the ball in his hands most of the time.

• Brings a level of versatility as a scorer. Can shoot off the dribble, post up smaller players, attack gaps and get to the basket. Shooting 45% from the floor, which can improve.

• Reads the ball well off the glass. Likes to grab and go. Will advance the ball with the pass.

• Production and level of success is unprecedented for his age. Has competed and thrived playing with and against grown men. Will benefit from what is essentially a massive competitive head start over his peers.

Weaknesses

• Athletic ability has come into question. Quick enough off the floor and can elevate for dunks, but relies on his size and change of speeds to get into the paint and finish. Will face an adjustment to the speed of the NBA game.

• Not an elite creator for himself off the dribble. Relies on using his body to shield the ball and change direction. Quicker defenders can get into him and make him uncomfortable. Can be forced into settling for his jumper in isolation situations.

• Shooting just 30% from three-point range this season. Ball looks good coming out of his hand – higher degree of difficulty shots may factor in. Stands to benefit from more open, set looks when placed alongside other playmakers.

• Big and strong enough to stay on the floor defensively, but may have difficulty defending elite athletes on the wing.

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