NBA Draft 2013: Dario Saric officially withdraws from draft

Jerry Lai-US PRESSWIRE

The 2013 NBA Draft lost an intriguing prospect on Sunday.

Dario Saric has officially pulled out of the 2013 NBA Draft, according to ESPN's Chad Ford. The Croatian big man was projected to be a first round pick in most mock drafts. His departure will make what some consider a weak draft class even weaker.

Saric's status in the draft has been in peril over the last month since it was reported he was looking for a promise from a team in the lottery. Saric recently signed a four-year contract with his Croatian club, but the deal includes an NBA opt-out clause after each season. It's possible Saric, who is just 19 years old, could enter the 2014 draft, one many experts expect to be deeper and loaded with talent.

Saric's decision to withdraw is an unwelcome development for teams who were looking to save salary cap space this season by drafting and stashing a European prospect. The 6'10 forward averaged 15.7 points and 9.3 rebounds a game during the Croatian playoffs.

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