As the years pass us by, and today’s basketball legends become older, it’s becoming more and more apparent that the NBA is in store for a bright future.
Guys like Trae Young, Ja Morant, Zion Williamson, and Jaren Jackson Jr. are just a few of the young studs that have emerged as significant game-changers for their teams, and there’s no telling who will join them in the next few years to come.
So, out of all the young players in the league, which has impressed the most so far? According to Bleacher Report, it’s Dallas Mavericks star Luka Doncic.
(via Andy Bailey)
Even the staunchest predraft believers in Luka Doncic have to be a little surprised by his first two seasons in the NBA. His production and influence on a playoff-bound team are mind-blowing.
“Awarding Doncic top-five-player status is not an overreaction to his sophomore climb,” Dan Favale added. “He has amplified his game to the distress of opposing defenses. His step-back gather is more nonchalant than that of Harden, and he’s gotten better at leveraging it into opportunities inside the arc. He’s more effective at keeping defenders on his back hip, and he mixes changes in direction with shifts in pace to keep helpers on tilt.”
For those curious about who made the rest of the list:
Bleacher Report’s Top 10 NBA Stars 21 and Under:
1) Luka Doncic
2) Trae Young
3) Zion Williamson
4) Ja Morant
5) Jaren Jackson Jr
6) Collin Sexton
7) PJ Washington
8) Kevin Huerter
9) Wendell Carter Jr.
10) Cam Reddish
— NBA Central (@TheNBACentral) July 26, 2020
Obviously, a case can be made for Zion, Ja, or Young to take that to spot, but Donald has a pretty legitimate claim to the title. Westbrook is the only other player in NBA history who has averaged as many points (31.3), rebounds (10.1), and assists (9.5) — per 75 possessions — in a single season as the Dallas star, whose presence has helped elevate the team in almost every aspect.
Despite being in just his second season, Luka seems comfortable running an offense and leading his squad.
And while it remains to be seen what he can do in the postseason, it’s fair to say the Mavericks are in good hands moving forward.