Nuggets international scout embraced opportunity to go pro

Rafal Juc joined Denver's front office at 21
by Aaron Lopez
Nuggets.com

Last summer, Rafal Juc was preparing to move from his native Poland to begin his American college education at St. John’s University in New York.

That was before Denver Nuggets general manager Tim Connelly offered him a choice.

“Do you want to go pro or go to college?”

Given an opportunity to join the Nuggets’ front office, Juc quickly accepted a job as their international scout.

“Since very early childhood, I was playing basketball in Warsaw,” he said “By the time I was 17, I realized I’m not going to be a professional basketball player. I just wanted to stick around and find some different path to be involved in basketball.”

Juc, now 22, will be taking part in his first NBA Draft with the Nuggets on Thursday night. He has spent the past five months traveling Europe to scout the top prospects available.

“I’m very thankful to the organization for bringing me in,” Juc said. “It’s been a learning process. We as an organization did a tremendous job. From the very beginning, we knew all the best international prospects.”

Before joining the Nuggets, Juc was the director of scouting for EuroHopes.com, a scouting service used by 15 NBA teams and more than 50 NCAA programs.

He also worked as the video coordinator for the Polish senior national team and was a member of the coaching staff for Poland’s under-18 national team in 2012.

Just two years later, Juc has found a home in the NBA.

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