Goran Dragic Has Sound Advice for European Players Heading to NBA Next Season

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As the 2019 NBA Draft approaches, players from around the globe are looking to make their NBA dreams a reality. However, Miami Heat point guard Goran Dragic has some advice for European prospects entering the draft process.

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“I just read somewhere that this year for the draft are a lot of players are coming in and only 60 get in,” he said. “So especially if you’re coming from Europe, it’s a little bit different. The only thing is I can tell them to work hard and to be patient and when the opportunity comes, to take it. But not to rush it.

“I didn’t rush it. I came into the NBA when I was 22. The first couple of seasons were struggles, were tough — different system, different language, different country. But I’m happy how my career has gone.”

There’s no shame in spending extra time in Europe to develop. Although recent stars like Luka Doncic, Lauri Markkanen, and Kristaps Porzingis have taken the league by storm at a young age, that isn’t typical for most European prospects.

Dragic is an excellent example of a player who took his opportunity when he had the chance, but didn’t rush his jump to the NBA. The Slovenian was a second-round selection in 2008 at the age of 22. Although he wasn’t highly touted as a rookie, he continued to refine his game and develop into an excellent point guard.

Now Dragic has an All-Star appearance and Most Improved Player award on his resume 11 years later. If any European player knows the value of patience, it’s Dragic.
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Danny is a professional sports writer with a focus in the NBA. Based in New York, he does a little bit of everything. He has a passion for film breakdown and taking deep dives into the X's and O's of the game. In addition to Heat Nation, Danny's work can be found at Elite Sports NY and ClutchPoints.