Luka seen apparently chirping ex-Kings GM Divac in Mavs’ win

Luka seen apparently chirping ex-Kings GM Divac in Mavs’ win originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area

Luka Dončić had the final word in the Dallas Mavericks’ 107-103 win over the Kings on Friday night at Golden 1 Center.

After sinking the game-sealing free throw with 4.0 seconds remaining in regulation, Dončić appeared to direct his ire at former Kings general manager Vlade Divac, who was sitting courtside.

Per Fox 40’s Sean Cunningham, Dončić appeared to wave goodbye to Divac and then as he returned to the bench, told his teammates and coaches “he shoulda drafted me.”

Luka Doncic as he puts away the Kings tonight in Sacramento with his final free throw, then as the final horn sounds, waves goodbye to former Kings GM Vlade Divac seated courtside and says “he shoulda’ drafted me.”

— Sean Cunningham (@SeanCunningham) March 30, 2024

Dončić is referring to the infamous 2018 NBA Draft when the Kings selected Duke forward Marvin Bagley III with the No. 2 overall pick, one spot ahead of him.

The Atlanta Hawks selected Dončić with the No. 3 overall pick and traded his draft rights to the Mavericks for the rights to Oklahoma guard Trae Young and a 2019 first-round draft pick, which turned into wing Cam Reddish.

Bagley played three and a half turbulent seasons with the Kings before they dealt him to the Detroit Pistons prior to the 2022 NBA trade deadline.

Dončić, on the other hand, has looked like a generational talent from the moment he entered the NBA. He won the NBA Rookie of the Year in 2018-19, is a five-time NBA All-Star and finished in the top eight in MVP voting the last four seasons.

This season, Dončić is averaging an NBA-best 33.9 points per game and is a top contender for the 2023-24 MVP.

Bagley was traded by the Pistons to the Washington Wizards earlier this season and currently is averaging 11.7 points an 6.1 rebounds over 47 games between the two teams.

There’s no telling how different the course of history might be if the Kings had drafted Dončić, but one thing is for sure: The draft-day slight still is on the mind of the 25-year-old Slovenian star.