Deni Avdija to play for Israel in World Cup Qualifiers

Deni Avdija #9 of the Washington Wizards. (Photo by Dustin Satloff/Getty Images)
Deni Avdija #9 of the Washington Wizards. (Photo by Dustin Satloff/Getty Images) /

The Washington Wizards are hoping some of their young players take significant steps forward during the NBA offseason. One of the young players the Wizards are hoping to see a leap from is forward Deni Avdija, who remains full of untapped potential.

Avdija is staying on the court during the offseason. It was recently announced he will be playing in the upcoming FIBA World Cup European Qualifiers for Israel.  

It’s going to be a fun process for the young wing as well as for Wizards fans. Avdija is already capable of a lot on the court, attributes that suggest he will at least grow into a game-changing role player in the coming years.

With Israel, he has an opportunity to work in the focal point role that he won’t be seeing with the Wizards. As arguably the best player on the team, Deni Avdija will see many more featured plays and will be relied on to carry a much bigger load than he has ever been asked to carry in the NBA.

It’s an opportunity to show where his game is, but most importantly, to show what he can do at this point of his career as a featured player. That’s why Wizards fans will surely have an eye out for how the 21-year-old looks in the World Cup Qualifiers.

Avdija has already spent time this offseason focusing on his perimeter shooting. Now, we get to see how that has paid off as well as a number of other things in terms of the forwards game entering what will be his third season in the NBA.

Last season, Avdija averaged 8.4 points, 5.2 rebounds and 2 assists per game. He took big steps forward in how he played on the defensive end of the floor, though, and that is already something the Wizards will be counting on carrying over into season number three.

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Where Wizards Fans Hope to see Growth from Deni Avdija

Besides the shooting (Deni shot just 31.5 percent from three last season), there are a number of things the Wizards coaching staff, front office and fan base would love to see improvements in from Avdija.

One specific area to keep an eye on will be his playmaking ability and how smoothly he helps his teammates get good looks. He’s a talented wing that can handle the ball and has a certain level of plus vision, but he needs to kind of piece together all the small things to become a true helpful playmaker on the offensive end.

The roster he is set to play with offers plenty of opportunities for ball handling and the majority of his teammates would greatly benefit from getting easier looks on the offensive end. He’ll need to also be mixing in some offensive skills we’ve rarely seen in the halfcourt and it would be nice to see him establish himself in international play as a strong rebounder.

No matter the results for Avdija and his team, high-level basketball being played is exciting by itself. Play is set to kick off on August 25th for the Israeli National Team when they will take on the Finland National Team.

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