NBA scouts are reportedly following footsteps of Latvian star Arturs Zagars


Last week, the Latvian national team reached the Top 5 in their first-ever FIBA World Cup and it was mostly due to a gifted point guard who wore the No. 55 jersey. His name is Arturs Zagars and he is now followed by scouts from both the NBA and the Euroleague, as the 23-year-old is currently a free agent.

However, his impressive exhibitions during the international competition don’t stop there, as he also set a new World Cup single-game record, after handing out 17 assists against Lithuania.

“I was just passing the ball, and my teammates made shots. It’s that simple,” said the Latvian playmaker after that contest.

Zagars made his name as one of the best distributors of this FIBA tournament, leading his country to impressive victories against powerful teams like France, Spain and Brazil.

The rising star ended his World Cup journey with averages of 12.4 points, making 55.6% of his shots from the field and 41.7% from beyond the arc. He also produced 2.6 rebounds and 7.4 assists per match, all in just 25 minutes of playtime.

“I believe he played a solid tournament with big responsibilities. He was in big shoes. As for the first time in the World Cup, and first time as a starter in the senior national team in such a competition, replacing an iconic player like Janis Strelnieks is not easy,” his head coach Luca Banchi said about his player’s potential.

“In the second game, we lost our captain, but he continued to produce good basketball to help the team stay at this level, proving he can help Latvia to compete with the best teams on the planet,” he then added.

Banchi acknowledges that Zagars is only beginning his career, and has a bright future ahead of him.

“But it’s just the first step. The next is to find a job for this guy because I believe he deserves it. He’s not like me, he’s young. I’m old, and I have to rest. He’s young and needs to play. Let’s hope he’ll find the job finally,” he concluded.

Oklahoma City foward Davis Bertans believes his Latvian teammate could perfectly play for an NBA franchise

Davis Bertans, an eight-year NBA veteran, explained why he believes Zagars is worthy of at least a two-way contract with an NBA team.

“Honestly, yes,” he said. “I think it’s a fair shot. It’s all about timing, chance, and opportunity. Everything can happen if you end up at the right place at the right time. He has all the tools to do it. He’s relentless, as you can see. They’re putting their best defender on him every single night, and he still delivers for us.”

Take a look at his highlights from his 24-point performance against Germany, the eventual world champions:

His head coach shared some of the challenges that young Zagars has endured to get to this point of his career, overcoming important injuries in the last couple of years.

“In the last two years, Arturs unfortunately suffered from many injuries. He already impressed everyone in the last FIBA window in February but suffered an injury in the third quarter that cost him the most of a season finale in Lithuania,” Banchi shared.

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