Meet Aday Mara: The Spaniard Sagan Giant Coming to the NBA in 2024
The evolution of the NBA has been beautiful to watch, just look at the 7-foot-4 19-year-old “French Mamba” Victor Wembanyama, who’s considered the best prospect in NBA History, and is a lock to be the No.1 pick in the 2023 NBA Draft, the most hyped prospect since LeBron James twenty years earlier in 2003. But if you think he's the only “Alien” coming into the league in the near future, think again, as there is an 18-year-old 7-foot-3 Spaniard Giant hailing from Spain named Aday Mara who’s been drawing rave reviews from NBA scouts, and can be a potential foe for Wembanyama for years to come.
Mara currently plays for Casademont Zaragoza of the Liga ACB League where in 20 games of action he averaged 5.7 points, 3.4 rebounds, and a block per game in just 11.8 minutes per game shooting 60% from the field. His numbers might not pop out to you, but the talent is evident in the Spaniard giant. He showed just that at the U17’s last summer against the USA National Team where he recorded 13 points, five rebounds, and three blocks on 5-of-7 from the field while also converting on a deep three-pointer, showing his capability to stretch the floor.
Against the United States, Mara showed his faceup ability, good hands, and soft touch by finishing baskets at the rim while also being to run the floor fluidly, not as fluid as Wembanyama, but still fluid enough to get out in transition and make his opponents pay. I mean just look at this play.
Now Mara will have to build up strength as most young bigs do as they continue to transition to higher levels of competition at the collegiate and professional levels in order for him to fully realize his limitless potential. The Spaniard savant is truly an incredible talent who is one of the best young passing bigs I’ve ever seen, whether that’s from the high post, swinging the ball from one three-point corner to the other, or even passing out of double teams.
Here’s a montage of his passes below, yes his teammates missed these shots, but once he gets to the NBA level with more talented and better players those passes will end up as assists for the Spaniard giant.
There have been rumors swirling that Mara could play college basketball next season for the UCLA Bruins . Overall, since the turn of the new decade of the 2020s, it seems the new descendants of ultra-talented big men after the Anthony Davis, Nikola Jokic, Giannis Antetokounmpo, and Joel Embiid generation are upon us in Evan Mobley, Alperen Sengun, Paolo Banchero, Chet Holmgren, Victor Wembanyama, and Aday Mara.
Who will be the best of those bunch will only be figured out over the test of time, but with Mara’s unique blend of size, skill, and passing ability that is rare for a big at his age… He’s definitely my presumptive pick to go No.1 in the 2024 NBA Draft.