Luka Doncic Meets Floyd Mayweather; NBA Rookie Sensation Challenges Money May
Luka Doncic, the 19-year-old phenom from Slovenia, is having one of the best rookie seasons ever. Floyd Mayweather Jr., the unbeaten boxing living legend, is a huge basketball fanatic. When the two stars met backstage, casual fans probably couldn't tell which one of them was happier about the encounter.
Doncic and Mayweather Jr. met each other after the Los Angeles Clippers defeated the Dallas Mavericks in Staples Center. The two stars posed for a photograph that the young Luka Doncic later posted on his Instagram. In the photo, Floyd Mayweather Jr. is seen holding a Luka Doncic autographed jersey.
According to the Charlotte Observer, Mayweather Jr. told Doncic that he plays just like him. "He said he plays like me," Doncic said. Luka reportedly responded by challenging Mayweather Jr. "I said I want to see it live."
Doncic's uncanny ability has led many basketball fans to compare him to James Harden of the Houston Rockets. Doncic and Harden both have nasty step-back jumpers and incredible court vision. While Doncic doesn't have the athletic ability of a James Harden, the rookie sensation compensates for it by playing a type of game that is somewhat unorthodox, off-rhythm, and herky-jerky that makes him difficult to guard.
Having said that, to compare Mayweather's own game to Luka might be a bit of a stretch as nobody plays like Doncic in the NBA. It's a fact that makes the rookie sensation a tough matchup for any team. But there is no doubt that Mayweather Jr. can play basketball. And he's proven that time and time again.
Not only does Mayweather Jr. organize basketball games that feature celebrities, but Money May plays in them. The games proceeds usually go to charitable institutions. Mayweather Jr. is also known to play pickup games against NBA players. And he does look good on the floor.
The reflexes that made Mayweather Jr. such a good boxer, a defensive genius, and an offensive juggernaut also make him a really good basketball player. However, he isn't in the same weight class, skills-wise, as Luka Doncic. Luka's production as a rookie is at par, sometimes even better than that of LeBron James.
Doncic is leading all rookies in scoring and is currently ranked 24th overall in the NBA. Among rookies, he's only behind the number one overall pick DeAndre Ayton of the Phoenix Suns in rebounding and ranks 37th overall in the NBA. He's also second in assists among rookies and 21st overall in the NBA. All these stats make Doncic the clear front runner for the NBA's Rookie of the Year honor.
At 19 years-old, Luka Doncic is already a legend in Europe, having led Slovenia to a Eurobasket title. Doncic was also the youngest ever to win the MVP of the top-tier Spanish basketball league. The Spanish league is considered the second-best basketball league in the world, just behind the NBA. Doncic is slowly becoming a household in the US.
And for someone like Floyd Mayweather Jr., a true superstar if the world of sports, to go out of his way and pose with a Luka Doncic jersey, it could mean that Doncic, at least in Mayweather's eyes, is already a superstar. After all, the living legend who has logged more years in the boxing ring than Doncic has in life would rarely do this.