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Knicks Prospect Rokas Jokubaitis Wins EuroLeague Rising Star Trophy

Previous winners of the award include Luka Doncic, Ricky Rubio and Danilo Gallinari.

The EuroLeague unveiled FC Barcelona's Rokas Jokubaitis as the winner of its 2021-22 Rising Star competition, as the 21-year-old point guard - whose rights are held by the New York Knicks - became the first Lithuanian-born player to hoist the trophy.

Jokubaitis averaged 7.2 points and 2.8 assists over 35 contests with Barca, which is set to partake in the EuroLeague Final Four in Belgrade later this month. His three-point shooting could put him in rare company, as his .595 success rate (25 of 42) is tops among players with at least one attempt per game. Jokubaitis has an opportunity to become just the second qualified EuroLeague player to shoot at least 60 percent from beyond the arc. Barca will battle Real Madrid in the semifinal round on May 19. Jokubaitis is in the midst of his fourth EuroLeague season.

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With permission from his European team, Jokubaitis played in three NBA Summer League games in Las Vegas last season, averaging 6.3 points over three games (9.7 minutes per game). He sank 7-of-10 shots from the field including 3-of-5 from three-point range.

"From a few practices that I had with the Knicks in Vegas, I can bring this calmness, controlling the tempo at the point guard position, bring some cold-mind, to tell my teams where to go, what do we have to be better, to be a second coach on the court.," Jokubaitis said in August, per the New York Post. "Playing in this system, I’ll need some time. I think I’d improve and will improve. We’ll see in summer league what I need more to be in the top league in the world. I’m not used to that speed and aggressiveness.”

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EuroLeague's Rising Star is voted upon by EuroLeague head coaches, is annually awarded to a young player (no older than 22 on the July 1 prior to the season's commencement) who makes an impact on his team. Current Dallas Mavericks star Luca Doncic is one of three two-time winners of the award alongside Bogdan Bogdanovic (currently of the Atlanta Hawks) and Nikola Mirotic (Jokubaitis' Barca teammate and formerly of the Chicago Bulls).