Aco Petrovic: 'You cannot compare Luka Doncic with Drazen Petrovic'

2022-09-09 08:38

The brother of the late Drazen Petrovic, Aleksandar Petrovic, disagrees with Luka Doncic's comparisons to his brother due to a difference in style of play and the team they have around them.

Credit: AFP – Scanpix
Credit AFP – Scanpix

Two days ago, Luka Doncic gave basketball fans around the world a performance that hasn't been seen in EuroBasket history for 65 years.

The Slovenian superstar scored 47 points against France, placing himself in second place in the all-time single-game scoring list, surpassing the legendary Nikos Galis.

After the game, many basketball fans and pundits were comparing Luka to another legend - Drazen Petrovic. Incredible scoring prowess coupled with a smile on his face invited comparisons in various media channels.

Drazen Petrovic

Drazen  Petrovic
Position: SG
Age: 57
Height: 196 cm
Weight: 91 kg
Birth place: Šibenik, Croatia

Croatian news outlet portal decided to contact the older brother of the late Drazen Petrovic, Aleksandar 'Aco' Petrovic to give a first-hand comment whether the comparison is valid.

"I heard those comments, and the reason was the use of language and the ease with which he plays. But I also have to say that Drazen mostly played in a significantly different way than Doncic does today, that is, as a shooter who came out of the screens," he told. "The way Doncic plays today, i.e. as a playmaker, and with the freedom that he has in the game, Drazen only played with Duda Ivkovic at the Eurobasket in 1989."

"With all due respect to Slovenia, Drazen then had players like [Toni] Kukoč, [Dino] Radja, [Vlade] Divac, [Zarko] Paspalj, and others," Aco compared. "That EuroBasket was at the same time the most dominant European Championship in history, as the Yugoslav national team won by about 30 points in a row, including Greece with Nikos Galis in the final. That's why it's hard to compare."

Yugoslavia cruised through the group stage of EuroBasket 1989, beating their opponent trio of Greece, Bulgaria, and France by an average margin of 24 points. The semifinal against Italy and the final against Greece were not much harder, as victories were obtained by 17 and 21 points respectively.

Drazen Petrovic became the MVP of the tournament. The Mozart of Basketball scored 28 in the final, and averaged 30 points in the tournament, only trailing Galis, who finished the EuroBasket with an average of 35.6.

"Doncic is difficult to judge because he is a player who is constantly in contact, and with such a bad set of referees, every possession he has is contact," the former coach explained. "What he does on the floor and how he played against Germany and France when the water came to his throat and when he took matters into his own hands - it's great. Well, even the defeat against Bosnia and Herzegovina did not harm them, because Doncic led them to first place in the group, and he did it with injured [Mike] Tobey."


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