Basketball / B. League

Alvark's Yudai Baba to join Mavericks minicamp

by Ed Odeven

Staff Writer

Alvark Tokyo star Yudai Baba, last month’s B. League Final MVP, has been invited to participate in the Dallas Mavericks’ upcoming minicamp.

The two-time defending B. League champions made the announcement on Tuesday.

The 23-year-old Baba averaged 10.7 points, 3.7 rebounds, 3.6 assists and 1.5 steals this past season in 59 games (12 starts). He was a key backup for coach Luka Pavicevic’s team, providing a big spark off the bench in his second pro season.

In the championship match against the Chiba Jets Funabashi on May 11, the Toyama native exhibited his all-around skills, contributing 12 points, 12 rebounds, six assists and two steals.

Dallas’ minicamp will be held June 16-18 in Texas. The event will help the Mavericks determine their roster selections for the NBA Summer League next month in July, and also to make player-personnel decisions for the team and its NBA G League affiliate for the 2019-20 season.

The 198-cm Baba acknowledged that “this challenge is a big step toward achieving (my) goal” of playing overseas in the future. In a team-issued statement, he added: “I want to come and play with all my might without forgetting to have fun.”

Tochigi Brex shooting guard Makoto Hiejima is also attending the three-day camp.