Euroleague: Luca Vildoza, the mirror in which Facu Campazzo must look

EThe dream of most players who get to play basketball professionally, it is being able to play one day in the best league in the world of this sport, the NBA. Sometimes dreams come true, and other times they don’t. In the case of the Argentines Luca Vildoza and Facu Campazzo, thealthough perhaps not as they would like because they have not had many opportunities in the United States.

The first of them is an old acquaintance from the Endesa League, since he landed in Vitoria in the summer of 2017 to play for the city team, Baskonia. He was there for four seasons and performed at a high level, achieving the ACB title in the 2019/2020 season. In addition, he was chosen the MVP of the final against Baraafter scoring the last basket when there were a few seconds left for the game to end, in which he signed 17 points, 2 assists, 4 rebounds for a PIR of 20.

Luca Vildoza when he was named the MVP of the Endesa League final | EFE

From Vitoria to New York to be cut by the Bucks

Vildoza’s destiny could be seen coming, because he was prepared to cross the pond and thus be able to play in the NBA. But he will do it the same way as Campazzo, in the middle of the season. On May 5, 2021, his transfer to the New York Knicks of the NBA became official, with a 4-year contract and 13.6 million. But on October 3, he was cut without even making his debut.

After a period of inactivity because he underwent foot surgery, the Milwaukee Bucks trusted him and signed him in April of this year. Thanks to the Wisconsin franchise, he has been able to fulfill his dream, to debut in the NBA, although he has done so for a short time. Only played seven playoff games with the Bucks last season, in which I averaged 0.7 points, 0.6 assists and 0.3 rebounds in an average of 2.4 minutes per game.

Vildoza playing with the Bucks |  @lucavildoza

Vildoza playing with the Bucks | @lucavildoza

On July 5, it was cut, but two days later it was refished for the preseason. And he definitely he was cut a month and a half ago. It is clear that his place is not the NBA, although in the future you never know what can happen because he is 27 years old. Many teams in Europe were interested in signing him, and he was Red Star Belgrade who got his rights. Many people think that returning from the NBA to Europe is a step backwards, but Vildoza wanted to show that he was worth playing at the highest level.

Tour of Europe to show what it’s worth

I didn’t get the opportunity I expected in the NBA, but I’m here to prove that I can play basketball.“, he told ‘Mozzart Sport’ as soon as he landed in Belgrade. And boy is he showing that he knows how to play, because after playing seven Euroleague games he is averaging the following numbers: 12.4 points, 2.6 rebounds and 3.9 assists with an incredible 41.9% accuracy on three-pointers (18/43).

Vildoza after scoring a triple |  EFE

Vildoza after scoring a triple | EFE

It is clear that his arrival, added to that of technician Dusko Ivanovichas changed the face of the Serbian team. He has become the leader of a team that includes good players like Nemanja Nedovic, Filip Petrusev, Ben Bentil and Hassan Martin. Without going any further, this past Monday Red Star beat Partizan in the ABA League by 90-74, in a game in which Luca Vildoza had 19 points, grabbed 2 rebounds and gave 5 assists for a PIR of 20. In the domestic competition he is doing great numbers: 15.2 points and 6.4 assists per game, signing 52.3% in field goals and 45.2% in triples.

Europe, the best destination for Campazzo

It is clear that making the decision to return to Europe has been the best decision for Luca Vildoza, and Facundo Campazzo should take good account of it. The point guard has recently been cut by the Dallas Mavericks and perhaps returning to the European continent is the best thing to do. He will not lack suitors, because everyone knows what he is capable of doing. And as the Argentine legend Nocioni has recently said, “I hope he can find a team where he is valued and respected, and where we can enjoy his game and his style“.



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