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Mavericks trade for rights to Luka Doncic at NBA Draft

Luka Doncic

Luka Doncic was one of the top talents in the draft. | Darko Vojinovic/AP Photo

The Mavericks have acquired the rights to Slovenia guard Luka Doncic, who the Hawks selected with the No. 3 overall pick in the 2018 NBA Draft. The Mavericks sent the rights to No. 5 overall pick Trae Young and a protected 2019 first-round pick to the Hawks.

Doncic had been in the running to be the No. 1 overall pick, but the Suns ultimately opted for Arizona big man Deandre Ayton to open the night. The Kings also passed on Doncic by taking Duke forward Marvin Bagley III with the No. 2 overall pick.

Doncic, one of the most well-regarded talents to come out of Europe in recent memory, is coming off a stellar season overseas. He won Euroleague MVP and Euroleague Final Four MVP as a 19-year-old and showed he could not only play alongside older players, but thrive against them.

During the 2017-18 season, Doncic averaged 14.5 points, 5.5 rebounds and 4.6 assists per game. He shot 45.6 percent from the floor. The Mavericks could’ve waited for a different prospect to fall to them at No. 5, but decided that it was worth giving up additional assets to move up two spots to land Doncic, who could be a franchise cornerstone for them.

The move potentially gives Dallas a new European star to build around with Dirk Nowitzki nearing the end of his career. The Hawks are taking a big bet that Young will work out better over the long haul.