Forward Nemanja Bjelica has agreed to a three-year, $20.5 million deal with the Sacramento Kings.
The third season of Bjelica’s deal is non-guaranteed, league sources said. After Bjelica changed course on his agreement with the Philadelphia 76ers earlier this week, Kings general manager Vlade Divac reached out to Bjelica to explain the benefits of staying in the NBA against leaving for Europe.
“I spent a lot of time talking with Vlade and as an icon in our country, he has a unique perspective on what it takes to put yourself in a successful NBA situation and what it takes as a player to perform in that situation,” Bjelica told Yahoo Sports. “The organization’s belief in and commitment to me overwhelmed me and my family. I am ready to do everything I can to help the Kings and be a part of the Sacramento community.”
Bjelica, 30, is a key addition to the wing and frontcourt rotation for the Kings, who view him as a high IQ player able to open the floor for a young, versatile team of athletes. A 6-foot-10 forward, Bjelica averaged 6.8 points and 41.5 percent 3-point shooting in 67 games for the Minnesota Timberwolves last season. The Kings reached agreements with good locker-room presences in Bjelica and guard Yogi Ferrell on Friday to complement the core of Harry Giles, De’Aaron Fox and Marvin Bagley III.
Bjelica originally agreed to a one-year, $4.4 million deal with the 76ers, but reconsidered the agreement because of family, professional and personal concerns.
Bjelica has spent his three NBA seasons with Minnesota after being the the No. 35 overall pick in the 2010 draft from Serbia.
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