The NBA Draft is an exciting time for all 30 teams. The worst ones get to find their new franchise cornerstones, while the best ones try for players that will complement their rosters. Aside from the picks themselves, there are plenty of trades to keep the league buzzing.
Sometimes, two draft picks get traded for each other. But rarely do they both thrive as these top five picks have.
During the 2018 NBA Draft, the Atlanta Hawks had the third selection and the Dallas Mavericks were picking fifth. The two teams swapped picks so they could both get their preferred guy: Dallas ended up with Luka Doncic and Atlanta got Trae Young.
Both players made immediate impacts and helped turn their teams around. Doncic won the Rookie of the Year award during the 2018-19 season, and Young was a finalist. Both made the NBA All-Rookie First Team.
This postseason, Young embraced his role as the latest villain in the NBA while bringing the Hawks to within two games from the NBA Finals. Meanwhile, Doncic led the Mavericks to an impressive 2-0 lead as road underdogs against the Los Angeles Clippers, ultimately falling to the Clippers in seven games.
And now that they’re eligible for their first supermax contracts, their teams are securing them for the long haul.
The Hawks signed Young to a five-year, $207 million supermax deal at the start of the free agency period. And just days later, the Mavericks gave Doncic the same five-year, $207 million. Both contracts will kick in at the start of the 2022-23 season.
There is a slight difference, though. Doncic is already eligible for the supermax, so he can make the full $207 million. Young will need to make an All-NBA team this upcoming season to earn $207 million. Otherwise, he’ll make $172.5 million over those five seasons.
Doncic and Young have already shown they’ll be among the next generation of stars in the league. Now, they’re about to start making that NBA star money.