In recent years, NBA Summer League has provided Boston Celtics fans with a chance to see their two European stash prospects in action. Both Yam Madar and Juhann Begarin have continued their individual development in the European leagues since having their rights acquired by Boston in back-to-back drafts.
However, this summer, it would appear neither guard will be making the trip to Vegas. According to Adam Himmelsbach of the Boston Globe, both Madar and Begarin have commitments to their European teams which will keep them away from Sin City.
Madar’s absence will especially hurt Celtics fans. The young guard has enjoyed a fantastic debut season for Partizan Belgrade, developing under the keen tutelage of Zeliko Obradovic and excelling despite playing against an improved competition level. In fact, Madar’s performances have been so impressive that he was recently named the EuroLeague’s Rising Star - an award similar in nature to that of the NBA’s Rookie of the Year.
“Madar is the fourth player to be named the Rising Star in his first full EuroLeague season, joining Rudy Fernandez (2006-07), Danilo Gallinari (2007-08) and Goga Bitadze (2018-19),” The EuroLeague’s press release read.
Unfortunately, Begarin has not enjoyed such a fruitful season. The young wing has continued to struggle with his perimeter shooting, hitting just 27.9% of his three-point attempts this year, despite averaging 3.7 per game. Furthermore, Begarin shot sub-50 % from the two-point range, while averaging almost as many turnovers (2.5) as he did assists (3.4.).
Nevertheless, the European brand of basketball is vastly different from the product the NBA has on offer, which could have helped both Madar and Begarin improve their stock with the Celtics and around the NBA. However, with a path to a roster spot seemingly non-existent at present, it does make sense for both players to continue focusing on their development with their current teams.
With that being said, Celtics fans will likely get to witness JD Davison and whoever is taken with the 35th draft pick (assuming it’s not traded away) once Summer League gets underway. So, there will still be plenty to be excited about once basketball finally returns later in the offseason.
Hopefully, this won’t be the last we hear of Madar and Begarin, as both players are still young enough to force their way into an NBA team’s plans; it’s just doubtful that team is the Celtics.