Here’s a look at some younger wings who are making a real impact on their Euroleague teams early in the season.
Nicola Kalinic, Do-Everything Wing, Crvena Zvezda (1991)
Kalinic is already a bit of a fan legend after two really strong performances with the Serbian National Team in the past couple summers. He’s made a name for himself with his extreme hustling and hard working style of play. Added in with some really sneaky athleticism that turns Kalinic into a very solid defensive player and a fun guy to watch in transition.
Now he’s stepped up his club level and we get to see him not just during the summer but all year long on the Euroleague main stage. Kalinic won’t be a big scorer but he chips in, in every part of the game. Through four games he’s one of the team leaders in minutes, assists, and steals. He’s the stickiest of glue guys and makes a few momentum changing plays every game, like this badass block in week 1!
and then again in week 2!
Vladimir Jankovic, Wing Scorer, Panathinaikos (1990)
Jankovic was a pro since he was 17 years old for Panionios. In his first year for Panathinaikos he was an end of the bench player in the Euroleague with a little bit more court time stability in the Greek League. But this year with Panathinaikos no longer flush with a giant budget, they have to rely more on their youth, including Jankovic.
He’s a scorer, first and foremost. Jankovic is a pretty crafty in the lane player and a good spot-up shooter, with solid mid-range touch. He’s not too quick for a wing but plays tough. He had 11 points in 17 Euroleague games last year and he already has 49 points through 4 games this season.
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Luka Babic, Multi-Skilled Forward, Cedevita (1991)
Babic is a unique player who is good at a variety of things offensively and has a great feel for the game. The skill that makes him most unique is his vision and passing ability for a forward. He has eight assists through two games, which is more than double anyone else on Cedevita has. Babic isn’t only characterized by his passing though, he has a tricky dribble drive game and a decent lefty shooting stroke. Babic went 1/10 from three-land in the first week against Unicaja and while most would say that’s horrible, I’d also like to look at the bright side and mention how damn confident in his shot he must have been to continue shooting.
So keep shooting Luka but most importantly, more behind-the-back passes please.