Kings’ Nemanja Bjelica felt bad for ‘not getting enough chance’ with Timberwolves
Sacramento Kings forward Nemanja Bjelica has been one of several breakout stars for the Kings this year.
The 6-foot-10 Serbian spent the first three seasons of his NBA career with the Minnesota Timberwolves. While he was certainly productive for the Timberwolves, he never truly made the impact he was capable of.
In an interview with Jace Frederick of the Pioneer Press, Bjelica voiced his frustrations during his time with Minnesota while also expressing gratitude that he landed in Sacramento:
“Everything is about opportunity in this league. You need to be ready. We have a great coach [in Sacramento’s Dave Joerger] who knows how to use everybody. … I’m happy here. It’s a new page of my NBA career. Sometimes, because I’m a human being, I felt sometimes bad because I didn’t get enough [of a] chance [in Minnesota]. Even if I got a chance, I would always go back to the bench. But I accepted that and I just try to be a great teammate. I want people to remember me like a great teammate, not like, ‘He was a good player.’”
The stretch 4 has blossomed in his short time with the Kings. Through 29 games, Bjelica has averaged career highs in points, rebounds, assists, field goal percentage and 3-point percentage. He even has the second-highest 3-point percentage in the entire league.
Bjelica has helped the Kings in the locker room as well as on the court. He provides a veteran presence who balances out the young players who can occasionally lose their way and play wild on the court. When they do, Bjelica acts as a safety net to help them regain focus.
So far, Nemanja Bjelica might be the most underrated free-agent signing of the season. After playing like this, no team will make the mistake the Timberwolves did and underuse the talented forward.