The Atlanta Hawks used the pick acquired in the Lou Williams trade from last summer to select Marcus Eriksson with the 50th pick and then took an additional international prospect in Dimitrios Agravanis with the 59th pick. Neither player is expected to be ready to play in the NBA in the next two seasons but both players have skills that could eventually lead them into an NBA rotation.
Eriksson is the most intriguing of the two players. In the 2013-14 season, he scored 11.2 points per game for Manresa in the Spanish ACB League (the best league outside of the NBA) while shooting 38% from three and 94% from the free throw line. Eriksson was 20 years of age during that season. By comparison, Mario Hezonja shot 38% from three and 67% from the free throw line at the same age during this season. Eriksson would have likely competed with Hezonja for playing time with Barcelona this season if not for tearing his ACL 5 minutes into his season.
Woooow, good for Marcus Eriksson. Tore his ACL, missed entire ACB season. Came up through Barcelona youth system. Great shooter #ATLHawks— Austin Green (@LosCrossovers) June 26, 2015
Eriksson is limited athletically but has good size at 6'7. The key for his transition to the NBA will be adding muscle and getting quicker which is not an easy adaptation. However, his profile is athletic profile is similar to Kyle Korver at Creighton. He could join Atlanta as soon as the 2016-17 season but he is more than likely 2-3 years away. There are no assurances that he will ever play a game in the NBA but he certainly could be an elite shooter that could fit well in Atlanta's system with some physical development.
Agravanis is more of a mystery. He turns 21 in December and was a late riser in the draft among international scouts. He plays for Greek powerhouse Olympiakos and has held up well during the team's time in the Euroleague. A complete liability as a shooter prior to this season, Agravanis shot 34% from the three-point line in the Greek league. He is a long way from being ready for NBA play. Like most young bigs, he is prone to foul trouble and struggles away from the basket in space on the defensive end. He remains a long shot as a prospect but has a strong frame to continue to build on. In his game film, he looks more muscular than his listed 6'10, 210-pound measurements.
Without seeing either player live, it is tough to get much feel for how they will translate to the NBA. In the case of Eriksson, it is easy to see him finding a role as long as his shot holds up. Agravanis is much more difficult to project but he will be a good player for Atlanta fans to follow over the next few seasons. I do not expect either player to be involved in this season's summer league due to their obligations to their domestic teams, but that information could change in the days ahead. Welcome to Atlanta Marcus and Dimitrios...well sort of.