Former Minnesota Timberwolves forward Nemanja Bjelica seemed all set to sign with the Philadelphia 76ers, verbally agreeing to sign a contract with them on July 5, 2018. But Bjelica never ended up physically signing the contract, and now he is negotiating with the Sacramento Kings.
This is a rare but not unheard of occurrence in the NBA. Almost always, if a player verbally agrees, he signs the contract within a few days. When these verbal confirmations are broken, there is usually a big story behind it, like the Dallas Mavericks/ DeAndre Jordan fiasco a few years ago.
But Bjelica has kept his reasons fairly confidential. Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports shares that the reason Nemanja Bjelica dropped out last minute were
“…due to family, professional and personal concerns. In Sacramento, both sides could find a longer-term deal.”
It is interesting that Bjelica would cite professional concerns as a reason to switch from the Sixers to the Kings.
Currently, the Sixers are a playoff contender and are shooting to stage an upset of the Golden State Warriors with a young and talented core. The Kings have been rebuilding for years, and judging by how their draft picks have panned out, probably will still be rebuilding for a while.
Regardless, if he does sign with the Kings, Bjelica would play an important role immediately. The Kings are in desperate need of a stretch four to space the floor for the shooting-challenged De'Aaron Fox and Willie Cauley-Stein. Having a shooter outside of Buddy Hield will certainly help the Kings click better on the offensive end.