Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz has signed Khalifa Diop, the 2021-22 7DAYS EuroCup Rising Star, to a multi-year deal. Diop (2.08 meters, 21 years old) arrives from Dreamland Gran Canaria, where he played an important role in helping the team win the EuroCup title – the club's first-ever continental crown – last season. In terms of his statistics in the 2022-23 campaign, he averaged 8.2 points on 65.7% two-point shooting, 4.9 rebounds, 1.1 blocks and a PIR of 10.6 in 22 EuroCup games.
Baskonia lands Khalifa Diop, the 2021-22 EuroCup Rising Star
Diop now has the chance to display his talent at the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague level, having previously played just 7:20 minutes in one game during Gran Canaria's last experience in Europe's premier club basketball competition in 2018-19. Over the last three seasons, the talented center has featured in 56 games in the EuroCup, 13 of which have been as a starter, and he has averaged 5.9 points, 3.7 rebounds and a PIR of 7.6.
The talented big man made his presence felt during his 22 appearances en route to the EuroCup crown last season, scoring a double-digit number of points on nine occasions. In fact, between Rounds 6 and 11 in the regular season, Diop was on a roll. He started with a season-high 21-point outing against Dolomiti Energia Trento before scoring 10 points or more in each of the next five games. Diop had the 12th most rebounds in the EuroCup in the 2022-23 season with 108, too.
Born in Senegal, Diop joined Gran Canaria at a very young age, making his EuroLeague and first-team debut at the age of 17 on March 28, 2019. He was promoted to Gran Canaria's first-team roster in 2021 and was chosen as the 2021-22 EuroCup Rising Star, having averaged 7.2 points and 4.6 rebounds per game for an average PIR of 12.6. Diop has also been a member of the Senegalese national team, and he achieved at a silver medal at the 2020 U18 African Championship.