Real Madrid star Luka Doncic is drawing rave reviews as the 2018 NBA Draft approaches, and some teams are impressed enough to at least be considering trading up in the first round for a chance to draft the talented point guard.
“A number of teams have also inquired about the possibility of trading into the top three, with an eye on picking Doncic,” ESPN’s Jonathan Givony wrote Monday. “Those conversations are expected to become more serious in the coming week.”
The Phoenix Suns own the No. 1 pick and should pick Arizona center Deandre Ayton. If that happens, the next four teams — Sacramento Kings at No. 2, Atlanta Hawks at No. 3, Memphis Grizzlies at No. 4, Dallas Mavericks at No. 5 — already have a quality point guard. The Kings (De’Aaron Fox) and Mavs (Dennis Smith Jr.) invested top-10 picks on point guards last season.
If these teams are content with their point guard depth and talent, maybe they look to trade out of the top five and acquire an additional asset(s) from a team looking to move up and select Doncic.
The last time a team traded up for the top point guard prospect in his draft class was last season when the Philadelphia 76ers dealt the No. 3 pick and another protected first rounder to the Boston Celtics for the No. 1 overall selection.
So far, the early returns from that trade have been disastrous for the 76ers, as Markelle Fultz missed most of the season due to injury and Jayson Tatum led Boston in playoff scoring during its run to the Eastern Conference finals.
Thumbnail photo via Matti Matikainen/Newspix24/Sipa USA via USA TODAY NETWORK
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