Paolo Banchero, Matteo Spagnolo and Gabriele Procida. Here are their possibilities –

from Flavio Vanetti

Tomorrow night in Brooklyn the NBA teams choose the best young people of the college: Banchero could even be the first absolute choice like Bargnani in 2006. Chance to enter the first 58 calls also for the other two Italian talents

On the night between Thursday 23rd and Friday 24th June, the NBA, which has just awarded the title to the Golden State Warriors, will celebrate the traditional and annual ritual of choices, that is the Draft which is an important mechanism for teams to change their skin by inserting young talents. Among these there are three Italians and one in particular, Paolo Banchero, could be the first absolute choice. In this case he would equal Andrea Bargnani: the Magician made history in 2006 – the only European for now called with the number 1 – ending up selected by the Toronto Raptors. The other two Azzurri in contention are Matteo Spanish and Gabriele Procida.

Who joins Gallinari?

The Draft is, after all, a democratic system, designed to contribute to the rebalancing of values: the principle that the best youngster out of college goes to the team that did worse in the previous season. Since 1984, the first absolute choice has been awarded through a lottery that extracts the order of the first three calls: this year it’s the Orlando Magic’s turn. The 2022 Draft will have 58 calls instead of 60: Miami and Milwaukee have in fact lost the right to appoint in the second round due to some market irregularities. Then meet at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, where Jabari Smith of the Auburn Tigers (a long of 2.08 that a potential All Star and who shoots with the precision of a guard, this year even with 42% effectiveness from three points) and Chet Holmgren di Gonzaga are Banchero’s two rivals in the race for the first overall choice. We will talk about Paolo, our go-to-uy ”, but also about Spanish and Procida, wishing all three to join Danilo Gallinari, the only Italian left in the professional league.

Banchero, en route to Houston?

nba-de92c0f2-ae07-11ec-881c-603be96566c9.shtml"> Paolo from Seattle, a pure millennial – born in 2002 -, tall, physically built and strong: 210 centimeters tall, crushes, penetrates, scores from distance, serves assists, uses his body with a fluency and dynamism that recalls the best of the best of basketball, mass even the movements – given the appropriate proportions – of a LeBron James, a Kobe Bryant or, when near the basket, a Giannis Antetokounmpo. This year was a Duke reference, with which he arrived at the Final Four missing for the qualification to the final for the title. It was written in the books that after his freshman year of college he would go to the NBA. Now he has the chance of him, even if the hypercritics underline that some defensive gaps could deny him that first nomination that seemed safe not long ago: he could slip second or third. he was evaluated by the Houston Rockets – which they will choose as a third party – and it seems that he is very liked.

Banchero and the Italian national team

We Italians are interested in Banchero doing well also in the NBA, because he is the great news of our basketball. ‘American citizen, but since February 2020 he also has our passport – despite speaking very little of our language and having never been to Italy – thanks to Ligurian roots of paternal great-grandparents (here is the joker we fished): he then gave us a great gift by announcing that he will wear the blue of the national team and not the US tank top. It can’t happen this year at the European Championship, but maybe it will happen – if the Azzurri qualify – at the 2023 World Cup.

Matteo Spanish, the Italian of Real Madrid

Brindisino, 19, play / guard of 194 cm, made his debut in basketball at just 14 years with the Stella Azzurra Roma, in B1. In 2018 he moved to Real Madrid, becoming the first Italian in the Blancos nursery, playing a match even with the first team and then playing, from 2019 to 2021, with the B selection. In the season that has just ended, Real lent him to Vanoli Cremona: in the year of his debut was one of the best in a eventually relegated team. He averaged almost 13 points per game (27 ‘of use per game), with excellent aim from three but also with a solid rebounding presence. On 20 February 2020 he made his debut with the senior national team at the age of 17, one month and 10 days (thus becoming the third youngest rookie in history), on the occasion of the qualifying match for the European 2021 (postponed to 2022, after the postponement of the Tokyo Games from 2020 to 2021) won 83-64 against Russia: 3 points on its booty. Lately in the ratings of the scouts a bit ‘dropped: his could be the very last call, the 58. In this case it would end up in the Indiana Pacers.

Gabriele Procida, talent made in Cant

Just turned twenty, 2 meters, guard / small forward role, born in Como from parents from Agropoli. a product of Cant’s nursery, a team with which he made his debut in Serie A on 13 October 2019 against Reyer Venezia. In short, he was able to stand out for his own offensive qualities and for an undisputed talent. Last year he also had his first calls in the national team, first against Estonia and then against North Macedonia (on this second occasion the first points in blue, 10, as well as 3 rebounds and 2 assists). Cant wanted to make it the pivot of the reconstruction, after the descent in A2. Instead, he preferred to accept the multi-year proposal of Fortitudo Bologna (with the possibility of leaving the NBA), but fate reserved him a second relegation. At the recent Chicago camp he impressed a lot: credited with call number 53, in this case he would even enter the orbit of the Boston Celtics runners-up NBA.

June 22, 2022 (change June 22, 2022 | 15:48)



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