Numerous sites and sources are currently reporting that Darko Milicic has turned down a contract with Real Madrid Baloncesto in favor of returning to the NBA. Sources are also saying that the Boston Celtics are offering a one-year contract at the veteran's minimum.
Milicic's contract was worth a reported six-million dollars over three years with the Spanish team. Real Madrid is already the home of former NBA players Rudy Fernandez and Sergio Rodriguez.
The former No. 2 overall pick was amnestied by the Minnesota Timberwolves this summer, and was having a hard time finding a team willing to take him on. His turning down of the popular Spanish team meant a NBA return was probable.
The report is originated from a European website, with a loosely translated headline of: Milicic Working on Deal with Boston. However, if any of you are so inclined to help out with the translation, please do!
Comcast Sportsnet New England's Celtics Insider A. Sherrod Blakely tweeted to confirm the signing.
Milicic plays a true center position, a spot the Celtics are lacking in offensive depth. Outside of Kevin Garnett, Boston doesn't have a real offensive threat at the center spot. Neither Jason Collins, nor Fab Melo can provide offensive efficiency with Garnett on the bench. The current option would be to play Chris Wilcox at center, but he is still a major question mark after missing the end of last season recovering from heart surgery.
Drafted second, after LeBron James in 2003, Milcic has respectable career averages of six points, four rebounds and just over a block per game. He started 23 games with the Timberwolves last season, and has made appearances for five different NBA teams in his career.
The issue will be who has to go. When Milicic signs this deal there will be only one remaining spot for a currently non-guaranteed player. The players fighting for that final spot in training camp will be this year's second-round pick Kris Joseph, as well as Summer League players Dionte Christmas and Jamar Smith. Rob Kurz and Micah Downs are also in the mix.
More on this and analysis of Milicic and what he can provide the Celtics, as it develop here on CelticsLife.
2011 graduate of Marist College.
Won the 2011 Silver Fox Award for Best Feature-Length Screenplay, for Our Father.
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