With the deadline for early entrants to withdraw their names from the NBA draft only hours away, ESPN’s Jonathan Givony reported Monday that international star Luka Doncic will remain in the field.
Doncic, 19, has been one of the most talked-about names in the lead-up to the draft, with some speculating he could be taken No. 1 overall, and more recent chatter shifting to teams reportedly interested in trading into the top three to take the Slovenian pro.
The reigning Euroleague MVP, Doncic is with his Real Madrid team in the Liga ACB (Spain) finals against Baskonia. The best-of-five series tips off Wednesday. If the series goes five games, the deciding game will be played June 22, one day after the NBA draft, which will be held at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.
The Phoenix Suns have the No. 1 pick in the draft, and Doncic is one of two prospects with particularly close ties to the club.
New Suns head coach Igor Kokoskov coached Doncic while in charge of the Slovenian national team in 2016-17, when it won its first EuroBasket title. The Suns finished the season with a league-worst 21-61 record.
The other player with those close ties to the Suns is DeAndre Ayton, considered by most the favorite to be the top pick. In his one season at the University of Arizona, Ayton turned one of the best freshman seasons in the school’s history, capped off with the Pac-12 Player of the Year Award.
Early-entry players have until 5 p.m. ET on Monday to withdraw their name from draft consideration.
—Field Level Media