Ljubljana – Slovenian NBA star Luka Dončić is to sign a five-year, $202 million contract extension with the Dallas Mavericks after the Tokyo Olympic Games, a number of US media have reported. Meanwhile, another Slovenian NBA player Goran Dragić is moving from the Miami Heat to the Toronto Raptors, but might be even re-routed to the Mavericks in the final move.
The news about Dončić means that the Mavericks would offer the deal to the 22-year-old before he enters the final year of his rookie contract, which will net him $10.2 million, said web portal Bleacher Report and acclaimed sports reporter and NBA expert Marc Stein.
The latter added it was likely the extension would take place after the Games as Dončić is now focused on helping Slovenia win their first Olympic medal in basketball. Slovenia will play the winner of the France v Italy faceoff in the semi-finals of the Olympic tournament on Thursday, at 1pm CET.
Dončić, who over three NBA seasons so far has made the All-NBA First Team twice, boasts an average of 25.7 points, 8.4 rebounds and 7.7 assists after playing 199 games in the league.
He was drafted in 2018 as the league’s third pick and was selected to the All-Rookie First Team as well. He also won the 2018-19 season Rookie of the Year.
In the last season, the Dallas Mavericks were knocked out of the NBA playoffs in the first round, game seven after losing against the Los Angeles Clippers. Dončić registered a 35.7 point performance on average in the playoffs. He added an average of 10.3 assists and 7.9 rebounds.
If the deal is indeed signed, it would be the biggest deal in Mavericks history, exceeding the $158 million contract for Latvia’s Kristaps Porzingis in 2019.
Meanwhile, Dragić, who was the captain of the Slovenian basketball team that won gold at the latest EuroBasket, is departing from Miami to head to Toronto in exchange for Kyle Lowry even though the Miami Heat had exercised the 2021-22 option on his contract. The departure marks the end of Dragič’s seven-year stay in Miami.
However, several US sources have reported that Dragić, who played the NBA finals with the Miami Heat last year, might not be spending his upcoming season on the Raptors team either as he could be part of a new trade.
The 35-year-old is said to prefer a trade to the Dallas Mavericks where he would join forces with his compatriot and friend Dončić. Dragić averaged 13.4 points, 4.4 assists and 3.4 rebounds with the Heat last season.