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Teen NBL star Giddey to focus on NBA draft

·2-min read

Adelaide 36ers prodigy Josh Giddey has ended his NBL season early to focus on being picked up in the NBA draft.

The Next Gen star will sit out the final two rounds of the Australian domestic campaign as he targets a move to the best league in the world next season.

The 18-year-old had made waves in his debut NBL season, following the lead of players like LaMelo Ball and RJ Hampton in skipping college basketball in the United States.

Giddey, originally from Melbourne, has been touted to be picked up in the first round of the NBA draft.

NBL Commissioner Jeremy Loeliger said he understood Giddey's decision after a busy rookie season.

'Josh, the club and the NBL have made the collective decision that it's in his best interests to finish his season now and start preparing for the NBA draft," Loeliger said.

"His workload in his rookie season has been immense and given how quickly the NBA draft is approaching, we are all supportive of Josh taking the opportunity to refresh and prepare for the workouts ahead.

"At just 18, he has demonstrated that he is an incredible talent and it's not surprising that most experts are predicting he will be a first-round draft pick.

"He became the youngest Australian to record a triple double in the NBL and has impressed everyone with his maturity on and off the court."

Giddey is tracking similarly to Ball, who impressed in the NBL for the Illawarra Hawks last season before being the No.3 pick in the NBA draft, then quickly establishing himself as a rookie of the year contender.

A gifted passer and versatile defender, Giddey views himself as a similar package to NBA All-Star Ben Simmons, who he could play alongside for the Boomers at the Tokyo Olympics later this year.