Lauri Elias Markkanen was born in Vantaa, Finland in 1997 to Pekka and Riikka Markkanen. His father Pekka attended the University of Kansas in 1989-90 and then played professionally in Finland. As a teenager, the younger Markkanen saw time at the junior level for HoNsU in Jyvaskyla. He then moved on to HBA-Marsky in the second-tier Finnish league before leaving for the University of Arizona in 2016. Markkanen has represented Finland in many international events, with his most notable accomplishments finishing as leading scorer at both the 2015 U18 Euros and 2016 U20 Euros. He has been actively involved with eco-friendly causes raising awareness for climate change. You can follow Markkanen on Twitter (@MarkkanenLauri) and Instagram (@laurimarkkanen).