The Lithuanian player is being one of the sensations of the current season. And it cannot be denied that in recent years in the NBA, the dominance and the best players are opting for the European continent, unlike previous decades in the U.S. league. Sabonis is one of the most statistically impactful players in both conferences, yet he still has yet to receive the same recognition as other players, despite the center's historic regular season statistics.

  • A dominant record

The Sacramento Kings superstar notched his 50th double-double in the 121-111 overtime win over the Memphis Grizzlies, where the Lithuanian had one of his monster games of 25 points and 18 rebounds.

With these statistics he became the third player since the union of the ABA and the NBA in 1976 to achieve this milestone along with a legend like Moses Malone and an NBA champion, who is Kevin Love. He has also become the tenth player to do so in the history of the league since its inception and is already part of a select group of Hall of Fame players of the best basketball league in the world such as: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Wilt Chamberlain, Walt Bellamy, Elgin Baylor, Bill Russell, Jerry Lucas, Elvin Hayes and Oscar Robertson.

However, in the 89-123 victory over the Raptors , the Lithuanian giant once again scored double digits with 13 points and 17 rebounds, including 10 assists, to round it off with another triple double. After this game he equaled the record held by Moses Malone (three-time NBA MVP , 1 championship ring, Finals MVP and 12-time All Star) with 51 consecutive games with a double-double.

Sabonis y su triple doble ante Toronto Raptors | Fuente: El Periódico USA
Sabonis and his triple double against Toronto Raptors | Source: El Periódico USA

Last night, despite the 109-102 loss to the Wizards , Domantas Sabonis did not cut his streak short and posted his 52nd consecutive double-double with 14 points and 14 assists, one shy of tying Kevin Love's record. The games against the Magic and 76ers could be historic, as the Kings star could become the player with the most consecutive double-doubles since 1976 and enter the NBA history books.

Above Kevin Love are only two players, Wilt Chamberlain and Oscar Robertson. The first of them has an unattainable record as many who owns among them the 100 points in an NBA game, becoming the highest score in a game in history, being virtually impossible to overcome by any player. Between 1964 and 1967, Chamberlain reached the amazing amount of 227 games with double digits of points and rebounds consecutively.

Oscar Robertson, who is the second player with the most triple-doubles in history only surpassed by Russell Westbrook, is also in the second position of this privileged list with 79 consecutive double-doubles, but with the added bonus that he achieved it in his second season in the league (1961-1962) with the Cincinnati Royals.

  • A magical individual season

The Sacramento Kings center is having the best season of his career since his arrival the NBA in 2016. Domantas Sabonis is averaging 20 points, 13.7 rebounds, 8.3 assists with an outstanding 61% shooting from the field and 41% from three-point range to establish himself as the perfect partner for De'Aaron Fox.

Aside from his averages, he is also the player with the most double-digit scoring games this season with 65 games and has the most triple-doubles in the current regular season with 24.

In both statistics he surpasses two-time NBA MVP and recent ring champion Nikola Jokic. The Serbian is again this season's favorite to win the ring, however he is being surpassed by the Lithuanian in double-doubles and triple doubles, as the Denver Nuggets giant has 57 and 22 respectively.

Enfrentamiento ente Jokic y Sabonis | Fuente: Conexión Deportiva
Showdown between Jokic and Sabonis | Source: Sports Connection

Sabonis is in sixth position for the MVP race, below the best players in the NBA such as Jokic, Shai, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Doncic and Tatum. And above Kawhi Leonard, Kevin Durant and Anthony Davis, with whom he has an amazing data, since the Angelino power forward has never achieved victory against Domantas Sabonis in direct duel with a 10-0 in favor of the Kings player.

Despite his incredible stats and being in charge of keeping the Sacramento Kings in the playoff race in one of the most hotly contested Western Conferences in recent years, he was not selected as an All-Star.He was not chosen as an All-Star, being underrated once again along with his squire De'Aaron Fox and with the Sacramento franchise without either of its two stars in the All-Star Game roster or on the All-Star bench.

  • The legacy of the Sabonis name

Domantas Sabonis from the beginning of his career has had added pressure relative to other players. His father is Arvydas Sabonis, one of the most dominant center in Europe, who began his successful career with Zalgiris Kaunas and later in the 90's with Valladolid and Real Madrid, with whom he won his first Euroleague. His physique, with a height of 2.20m, together with moves typical of outside players, attracted the attention of the NBA.

His path was not smooth, as he had several injuries including Achilles tendon before arriving to the American league, which would make him miss most of his agile movements and yet he knew how to adapt to stay in the sport he loved. He arrived in Portland after his most glorious era of the franchise. Domantas Sabonis ' father played 7 seasons with the franchise leading the rebounding department in them, with 470 games in regular season and 51 in playoffs, reaching the conference finals in 2000.

Arvydas Sabonis y Saquille O'Neal | Fuente: Mundo Deportivo
Arvydas Sabonis and Saquille O'Neal | Source: Mundo Deportivo

After a career in the NBA that was more than solid, but outrageous due to injuries prior to his arrival in the league that depleted him physically. Even with this, he was able to enter the Hall of Fame years later and return to his former home in Lithuania . At almost 40 years old and close to retirement, he won the Euroleague for the second time becoming the MVP of the competition before his retirement to establish the Sabonis name at the top.

  • The long road to stardom

The Lithuanian center began his professional career as a 16-year-old making his debut with Unicaja Malaga and later becoming part of the main roster. In 2014, after a full year with the Spanish team he headed to the University of Gonzaga Bulldogs of the NCAA and after a final year with averages of 17.6 points and 11.8 rebounds he would embark on his path to the NBA.

His career in the league began in an unstable way being involved in several transfers. He was chosen in 2016 by the Orlando Magic in the eleventh position, but was traded that same night to the OKC Thunder along with Victor Oladipo, in exchange for Serge Ibaka.

Sabonis tras ser elegido por <b><a  data-cke-saved-href='' href=''>Orlando Magic</a></b> en el Draft | Fuente: The Score
Sabonis after being selected by Orlando Magic in the Draft | Source: The Score

After a first season without flashes playing 20 minutes per game, he was traded again, this time to the Indiana Pacers along with Oladipo and with the stellar arrival of Paul George to the OKC Thunder. In his first two years he had to act as a reserve, until in his third season he was an undisputed starter and became the star of the Indiana franchise to become an All Star for the first time in his career in 2020.

In 2021 he maintained his great form and after being replaced he was chosen again for the second consecutive All Star year to establish himself as a valuable asset in the NBA. However, his fifth season in Indiana saw the most important transfer of his career.

Domantas Sabonis en su etapa con <strong><a  data-cke-saved-href='' href=''>Indiana Pacers</a></strong> | Fuente: EFE
Domantas Sabonis during his time with Indiana Pacers | Source: EFE

He was sent to the Sacramento Kings, in exchange for Buddy Hield and one of the jewels of the league, Tyrese Haliburton. This was one of the most controversial trades in recent years, as Sacramento did not understand the departure of a player like Haliburton.

But this was the best decision for both franchises. Sabonis in his second season was chosen All Star for the third time in his career and led the Kings to the playoffs after 16 years without a playoff appearance, even placing them in the third position in the West and showing a great level against the Warriors in the first round. And for their part, Indiana Pacers with Haliburton are raising their competitive bar and the point guard has found a place to bring out his full level.

In the summer of 2023, Domantas Sabonis signed a contract extension for $195 million over five seasons. This year the Lithuanian is having the best season of his career and is living up to the prestige of the Sabonis name.