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Croatian Prospects to Showcase Talents in NYC

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NBA Croatian prospects Dragan Bender and Lovro Mazalin are among the overseas stars to receive invitations to the Basketball Without Borders Global camp in New York City, sources told Jonathan Givony of DraftExpress.

Bender and Mazalin, both 17 years old, will participate in and attend the NBA All-Star festivities from February 13-15, 2015.

Bender, the most coveted Croatian projected NBA draftee — ranked No. 13 in the 2016 NBA Draft, according to DraftExpress — averages 10.5 points, 8 rebounds and 2.8 assists in 27 minutes over six games for Maccabi Ramat-Gan of the Israeli Second Division.

Bender, a lengthy small-forward who signed a seven-year pact during the offseason with reigning Euro Champs Maccabi Tel Aviv, is expected to return from a single-season loan and make the jump to Tel Aviv next season, I’m told. Bender will also compete in the upcoming Euroleague International Junior Tournament in Rome, Italy, from December 27-29.

Mazalin, a creative wingman is set to sign a four-year deal next summer with Croatian power-club Cedevita Zagreb, according to sources. He’s currently registering 1.9 points, 0.7 boards and 0.2 assists over 5.2 minutes per showcase through 11 Euroleague and Adriatic League appearances.

David Pick has extensively covered European basketball and American players abroad since 2010. His work can be found at Eurobasket.com and ONE.co.il. Follow him on Twitter @iamdpick

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