Where does Luka Doncic’s 37 rank in all-time World Cup debuts?


Photo: Peter Baba

Luka Doncic made history in his FIBA Basketball World Cup debut. Scoring 37 points, he secured the fourth-highest point total for a debutant player.

His efficient shooting, at 61.1 percent overall and 9-of-10 from 2-point range, led Slovenia to a 100-85 victory over Venezuela. He also set the highest point record of the ongoing tournament.

Doncic’s remarkable performance includes a second-highest efficiency rating of 39, with 7 rebounds, 6 assists, and 2 steals in under 31 minutes of play.

By scoring that many points, he surpassed Radivoj Korac on the list of World Cup best scorers for their first game. The late Yugoslavia legend was previously at no. 4 with 36, which he did against Peru in 1963.

Notably, Doncic was just four points away from eclipsing Korean icon Shin Dong-pa’s 40 points, which he scored against Brazil in 1970.

Leading the list is Nick Galis with a remarkable 53 points against Panama in 1986. Second place goes to Korean player Lee Chung-hee, who scored 45 points against Brazil in the same 1986 meet in Spain.

Check out Luka Doncic’s TCL Player Of The Game highlights during the Slovenia and Venezuela game at the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023:

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