Over the last seven years or so, NBA analyst missed elevated international players such as Giannis Antetokounmpo and Luka Doncic.
When the Milwaukee Bucks took Anteokoumpo with the 15th pick in 2013, draft experts compared him to players such as Thabo Sefolosha to Scottie Pippen, Nicolas Batum, and Kevin Durant, according to Jared Dubin of fivethirtyeight.com.
“I wouldn’t touch him,” a Western Conference executive said. “I don’t even know how good he is going to be once he reaches his potential.”
Giannis Antetokounmpo has gone on to become a two-time league MVP, and Defensive Play of the Year.
Before Doncic eventually landed in Dallas in 2018, analysts such as Rashad Phillips, Skip Bayless, and Colin Cowherd.
“I don’t think Luka Doncic is a lottery pick. I don’t see Steve Nash, and I definitely don’t see Larry Bird, said Phillips.
“Doncic at 6’7 will get exposed for all the inadequacy that Dirk had. Dirk is not a great athlete and Dirk does not have explosiveness, Dirk is not physical, well that’s what is going to happen to Doncic. I’m not share he will be a dominating NBA player,” said Bayless.
“He doesn’t pop athletically, said Colin Cowherd.
Doncic went on to win the Rookie of the year in 2019, and made the All-Star Team in 2020, and was also an MVP candidate.
When I spoke with Zach LaVine last season, he shared with me that he “Has never seen some go from a top player to an MVP candidate in one year.”
“Everyone will regret it! The Suns regret it already, the Kings will regret it, the Grizzlies are going to regret it, the Hawks are going to regret it. This is a no brainer,” shared Elhassan.
“This guy [Luka Doncic] is a no brainer talent, and it staggered me that people couldn’t see that. People tried to compare him to other European prospects from year’s past. Players such as [Andrea] Bargnani, [Danilo] Gallinari, Darko [Miličić], and Porzingis, who is has been an All-Star in our league, but none of them were ever MVP of the Euro League. Those guys didn’t play on the first team in Spain.”
Former professional basketball player Scott O’Gallagher thinks analyst that are not familiar international players should not share their opinions publicly. He also thinks that they should do their research, so they can give their listers accurate information.
“We need to get better analyst on TV. You heard here first. I’ve done it in front of a lot of people. I am not saying it is me by any chance, I am not looking for any of that, but let me tell you something. If you do not know the international game in some capacity, get your a** of the TV. Get off the television, there has been too many international stars that had quite the careers in the league. And yet we have analyst on TV, who do not know anything about the international game. I’m talking from leagues that they are playing in,” said O’Gallagher recently on Instagram Live with Ryan Hollins.
“There is disrespect that is still going on, it was bad with Luka [Doncic] it is even worse with LaMelo [Ball]. If you heard these guys talk I’ll keep them nameless, but it has been on multiple networks. You would not know the difference between LaMelo was playing as opposed to where Giannis [Antetokounmpo] came from. Division II a lot of time could be as good as Division I in a lot of other countries.”
Scott O’Gallagher has played at every level except the NBA, but he was brought into a couple training camp sessions, but he did however play overseas in Macedonia, Australia, Turkey, Bulgaria and New Zealand. He played four seasons before tearing his hamstring in New Zealand. He would later make the transition into the gaming industry.
O’Gallagher recently that NBA teams to this day still reach out to pick his brain about international players they might be interested in. He also shared that a Western Conference team even offered him a scouting position, but turned it down to stay with 2K Sports at the time.