In a reversal of plans, one of the world's best teenage players – Croatian forward Dario Saric – has decided to enter the NBA draft in June, sources told Yahoo! Sports.
Saric, 19, had planned to spend one more season in KK Cibona Zagreb of the Adriatic League before joining the NBA, but changed his mind and has signed the necessary paperwork for inclusion this year.
As an international player, Saric has the right to withdraw from the draft before June 17 and reapply in 2014. He could use the time to weigh his projected draft status, which NBA executives tell Yahoo! Sports could rise as high as the mid-first round.
Marc Cornstein of Pinnacle Sports will represent Saric in the NBA.
At 6-foot-10, Saric is considered one of the top small forwards in the draft class, and league executives believe he's likely be selected in the 20's range. The relative weakness of the 2013 draft has driven some prospects – both internationally and in the United States – to declare a year sooner than they would've originally preferred.
Saric has gifted passing skills and an emerging perimeter shooting game.
DraftExpress.com rates Saric as the No. 1 international player out of the birth year of 1994.
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