Luka Doncic didn't get compared to Larry Bird when he was introduced a day after the Dallas Mavericks traded up to get the third overall pick in the NBA draft.
For president of basketball operations Donnie Nelson, that's progress based on his last experience of getting a tender-aged European in hopes of lifting the Mavericks out of the doldrums.
Twenty years later, Dirk Nowitzki is the highest-scoring foreign-born player in league history. Back then, the big German wasn't remotely comparable to Larry Legend — and his rough first two years proved it.
So ask Nelson about a player the Mavericks clearly coveted heading into the draft in Doncic, and he'll choose his...