(Mega Soccerbet/Ivica Veselinov)

Five things to know about Pelicans forward Karlo Matkovic

  1. New Orleans fans will get a look at him in a summer league uniform soon when he joins the squad in Las Vegas next month, but his future with the big-league Pelicans is more of a long-term situation. GM Trajan Langdon said Thursday about the 52nd overall pick that “the plan is for him to stay in Europe for a year or two.”
  2. Often described in scouting videos as a bouncy, athletic big, many of Matkovic’s highlights consist of him finishing alley oops with dunks. Langdon on the 6-foot-10, 231-pounder: “(He is a) high-energy young man. Big-time athlete with his size. We’re hoping that with playing a year or two in Europe (against) some high-level competition, he’ll be ready to be back here and help us.”
  3. Matkovic turned 21 in March. He was born in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and has been representing the Croatian national team in international competition.
  4. While playing in the Adriatic League last season with KK Mega Bemax, Matkovic averaged 11.6 points, 6.2 rebounds and 1.2 blocks in 22.1 minutes. He’s drawn comparisons to Clippers active reserve big Isaiah Hartenstein.
  5. NBADraft.net recently described him as a “riser” on the league’s 2022 draft boards. That site noted that physical traits are part of why Matkovic was attractive to NBA teams: “Plays with a good motor. Runs the floor well for a big. Good leaper off two feet. Light on his feet, can elevate quickly from the floor. Explosive finisher at the rim, likes to dunk the ball whenever he has the chance.”