NBA teams are always on the lookout for young, raw talent around Europe to give them a surprising edge across the Atlantic, but old, established players are also options too. Milos Teodosic, maybe the best European player not in the NBA right now, is now, is such a player, with some believing the Sacramento Kings having an inside track to signing him.
Teodosic, 30, plays for CSKA Moscow, the Euroleague champions, and one of the two favorites to win the title this year. He is a Olympic and World Championship silver medalist with Serbia, impressing on the international stage against the United States and while scouts from the league were watching. To this day, he hasn’t found a strong enough incentive to make him take on the challenge of playing in the NBA, despite what seems like a sense of fulfillment, winning everything possible in European club basketball.
So why the Kings? Teodosic has been linked with the Nets, but many believe he has no interest in playing for them due to their inability to contend in the near future. It’s hard to think of the Kings as contenders too, but maybe their front office personnel, especially Vlade Divac, also a Serb, can help cut corners? The Kings and the Nets will have plenty of cap space to compete for Teodosic and improve the team in free agency, but if the Euroleague star has said he also has competitive ambitions on his mind, both teams don’t seem to fit the bill.
In terms of numbers, Teodosic continues to prove he’s one of the best players in Europe, although former San Antonio Spurs fringe player, Nando de Colo, is probably even better. Teodosic is averaging 16.2 points and 7 assists per game in under 29 minutes a night for CSKA Moscow, with his 3-point shooting accuracy down to 37.5% after two consecutive seasons of knocking down over 40%.
Teodosic does have unique vision with the ball and can play off of it, but it’s somewhat hard to imagine him making a complete transition and adaptation to the NBA when he’s on the wrong side of 30. Yes, he has the basketball brains to succeed and be an integral part of a team in this league, probably as a backup point guard or something in that capacity, but besides the challenge of trying to make it in the NBA, there aren’t too many reasons making such a move (a risky one) worthwhile. He still makes excellent money in Europe, and won’t have to fight for scraps as if he’s just an unknown rookie. Unless he’s really bored with basketball across the Atlantic, the NBA might be less attractive to him than some may think.