With the confirmation that the next season will begin on December 22, a new edition of the lottery for young players was the first step that the teams took to create their squads for 2020-2021.
The NBA Draft, which had a date set for June 25 at the Barclays Center, the arena where the Brooklyn Nets play home, had to be postponed due to the pandemic and was finally held this Wednesday, November 18 in the ESPN television network headquarters in Bristol and virtually.
In the draw, the league’s 30 franchises had a chance to select the best youth prospects in college basketball from the United States and some young international figures.
Among those names was Argentine Leandro Bolmaro, the only Latin American present in the team, who was selected by the New York Knicks in 23rd place and will play for the Minnesota Timberwolves, by an agreement between the franchises.
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LEANDRO BOLMARO IS CHOSEN AT PICK 23 BY THE NEW YORK KNICKS! ????????
— NBA Latam (@NBALatam) November 19, 2020
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Leandro Bolmaro, who two years ago participated in the Básquetbol Sin Fronteras event -an event organized by the NBA for projects with a possible future in the league- and was chosen among the 12 best in the tournament, began his career in Bahía Basket, the team of the Argentine National League whose director is Pepe Sánchez.
After his experience at the Bahía Blanca club, Barcelona of Spain acquired the rights to Bolmaro and, after moving from the subsidiary to the first team, the Catalan institution improved him and renewed his contract until 2023.
The 20-year-old from Cordoba is one of the great Latin American talents of recent times. In the last 10 years, 27 international players were chosen in the top 10 of the Draft, including 16 among the top five.
It is important to remember that the last Argentine selected was Juan Pablo Vaulet in the 2015 draw when the Charlotte Hornets selected him in 39th place and then traded him to the Brooklyn Nets for two second-round picks.
In the Official Draft Guide, the NBA included the young player who was compared to Manu Ginobili for his athleticism and physical size. “Complete athlete with a ‘fast motor'”, says one of the characteristics that the league chose to describe the Cordoba.
What were the other qualities that stood out in the review? “He has good size and creativity, he can play with or without the ball in attack and is attentive on both sides of the court.”
Argentines chosen in the NBA Draft
-1988: Jorge González (54 °) and Hernán Montenegro (57 °)
-1993: Marcelo Nicola (50th)
-1999: Manu Ginobili (57th)
-2002: Federico Kammerichs (51 °) and Luis Scola (56 °)
-2003: Carlos Delfino (25 °)
-2015: Juan Pablo Vaulet (39th)
-2020: Leandro Bolmaro (23°)