Nemanja Bjelica RumorsAll NBA Players
Height: 6-10 / 2.08
Weight:210 lbs. / 95.3 kg.
Height: 6-10 / 2.08
Weight:210 lbs. / 95.3 kg.
Serbia forward Nemanja Bjelica made his self-criticism while praising his team’s camaraderie following the eliminating loss to Argentina in the World Cup quarterfinals. “We weren’t ready for this game. Especially mentally. Especially myself. I take complete responsibility for it. I know we are a team but as one of the leaders… I must say I played like s–t,” Bjelica said in the post-game presser.
“They deserved this victory today. What I can say for us is that we are a great group of guys. We didn’t lose this game because are arrogant or we think that we are something special. We just didn’t prepare ourselves the right way. I can talk for hours but this loss is very tough. It’s hard. But it’s basketball.”
Jorge Sierra: Major upset at the World Cup: Argentina, without a single NBA player, beats a Serbian NT with Nikola Jokic, Bogdan Bogdanovic, Nemanja Bjelica and Boban Marjanovic. The Serbians won their first four games of the tournament by an average of 40.7 points. Life comes at you fast.
Serbia advanced to the Second Round of the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 on Monday after trouncing Philippines 126-67 in Foshan. Nemanja Bjelica led seven Serbian players who scored 10 points or more, while the Philippines’ most important player Andray Blatche had a night to forget, finishing with 5 points, 5 rebounds before fouling out.
The Philippines provided no serious challenge to red-hot Serbia. Sasha Djordjevic’s side strolled to the 126-67 win in 2019 FIBA World Cup Group D action at Foshan on Monday to secure a spot in the second round. Nemanja Bjelica saw action after missing the first game and made 7/7 from the field for 20 points. Bogdan Bogdanovic put up 17 points to include himself among seven players scoring in double digits. Nikola Jokic tallied 11 points, 7 rebounds and 7 assists in just 18:45.
Despite trailing at halftime (32-23), Serbia turned the tables in the second half and logged a 61-56 win over France at the AusTiger Tournament. With this win, Serbia stayed the only undefeated national team in preparations for the 2019 FIBA World Cup in China as they won all ten of their games. Miroslav Raduljica led the way with 13 points followed by Nikola Jokic’s ten while Vasilije Micic added nine points. Bogdan Bogdanovic, Nemanja Bjelica and Vladimir Lucic didn’t play for Serbia.
Any thoughts of returning to Europe in the near or distant future? Nemanja Bjelica: I don’t know. I want to finish my career in the NBA, but you never know. I belong to the NBA and I want to stay there.
What’s your feeling concerning your presence in the NBA? Nemanja Bjelica: I’ve been there for the last four years. I have found my role, I feel great at Sacramento. Our guys treat me well, we have a young team and one day we will fight for the championship.
Harrison Wind: Serbia, without Jokic and Marjanovic for all but five minutes, edges Giannis and Greece 85-80 in OT to take the Acropolis Tournament gold. Bogdanovic (28 points, five 3s) and Bjelica (18 points, 14 rebounds) did the heavy lifting for Serbia in front of a loud, pro-Greek crowd.
After beating Turkey, Serbia logged its second win at the Acropolis Tournament by dominating Italy 96-64. Nikola Jokic scored 20 points in addition to Bogdan Bogdanovic’s 15. Boban Marjanovic, Marko Guduric and Nemanja Bjelica added 13 points each.
Serbia took down Lithuania in a tough preparation game ahead of the FIBA World Cup thanks to the effort of its NBAers. Bogdan Bogdanovic added 27 points and was Serbia’s leading scorer, followed by Nikola Jokic stopped at 14 and Nemanja Bjelica added 11 points.
Sacramento Kings forward Nemanja Bjelica said that there’s nothing like of playing for the Serbian national team for him since the feeling is incomparable with everything else he experiences as a basketball player. “When you play for your national team it’s something really special. You can’t compare it with NBA or with EuroLeague. It’s the same sport but you take a lot of pride when you represent your country,” Bjelica said during an interview for the Kings.
Jason Anderson: Interestingly, Kings coach Dave Joerger said his decision to start Koufos over Bjelica the other night was only partly due to the way JJJ attacked Bjelica on Nov. 16 in Memphis. Joerger said there was also “something else” he wanted to look at, but he wouldn’t elaborate.
Returning to the arena that played host to the end of the Jimmy Butler saga, the Timberwolves looked nothing like the team that had been rejuvenated by the arrival of Robert Covington and Dario Saric. That relentless, turnover-generating defense that wreaked havoc at Target Center was buried under an avalanche of 3-pointers, most notably from ex-Timberwolves forward Nemanja Bjelica. “I have a coach who is trusting me,” Bjelica told The Athletic after a 141-130 victory over the Timberwolves on Wednesday night. “He knows how to use me. Not just me, he knows how to use everybody on this team. We have a great atmosphere, great group of guys. It’s the NBA. Everything is about opportunity in this league.”
An old Wolf looks awfully good running free in Sacramento. The new-look team from Minnesota, you didn’t even have to squint to see the same old Timberwolves rear their ugly heads. Returning to the arena that played host to the end of the Jimmy Butler saga, the Timberwolves looked nothing like the team that had been rejuvenated by the arrival of Robert Covington and Dario Saric. That relentless, turnover-generating defense that wreaked havoc at Target Center was buried under an avalanche of 3-pointers, most notably from ex-Timberwolves forward Nemanja Bjelica.
“I have a coach who is trusting me,” Bjelica told The Athletic after a 141-130 victory over the Timberwolves on Wednesday night. “He knows how to use me. Not just me, he knows how to use everybody on this team. We have a great atmosphere, great group of guys. It’s the NBA. Everything is about opportunity in this league.”
It was no secret that Bjelica was frustrated in his two seasons playing for Tom Thibodeau. When Butler was out with a knee injury, Bjelica was inserted into the starting lineup and played 34 minutes per night. When Butler was healthy, Bjelica hovered between 13 and 19 minutes. “When you don’t play a lot and you get an opportunity, you need to stay ready and play good,” Bjelica said. “But then the next game, when everybody’s healthy, you don’t play. That was really hard for me, but not just for me, for every player in the league who doesn’t have a big role. I will never say that I was the best player in Minnesota. We had a great team. I think coaches like me there. People love me there. But maybe that wasn’t a good fit for me.”
This is still a roster with little margin for error. Not much has worked for the Kings outside of lineups with Fox, Cauley-Stein, Hield, and Bjelica. All four have net ratings higher than plus-8.0. No one else in their rotation has a positive net rating. Bogdan Bogdanovic, who has been out since the start of the season recovering from offseason knee surgery, will likely be asked to stabilize their bench units when he returns later this month. However, even with Bogdanovic, the Kings will have a tough time holding on to a playoff spot. They are ninth in the Western Conference in net rating (plus-0.3), and the three teams directly behind them are the Lakers (minus-0.8), Pelicans (minus-1.8), and Rockets (minus-5.3)—all of whom have the star power to make up ground quickly.
Nemanja Bjelica is set to make his Kings debut. The free agent acquisition missed the team’s first three games with a sore left knee, but he adds another scorer and an option at both forward positions.
Sean Cunningham: Kings vs. Warriors (in Seattle) Kosta Koufos-OUT, right hamstring strain. Iman Shumpert-OUT, sore left calf (day to day) Nemanja Bjelica-OUT, sore left knee (day to day) Yogi Ferrell – Questionable, sprained right thumb; x-rays negative.
Dmitry Planidin: NBAers in today’s #FIBAWC qualifiers: Yuta Watanabe vs Kazakhstan (17), Nicolas Batum vs Bulgaria (17p/5r/5a), Tomas Satoransky vs Russia (16p/8r/6a), Jusuf Nurkic vs Finland (20p/9r), Dzanan Musa vs Finland (15p/9a/5r), Dennis Schroeder vs Estonia (16p/10a/6r), Bogdan Bogdanovic vs Greece (19p/3s), Nemanja Bjelica vs Greece (9p/12r/5a)
Sasa Djordjevic on Divac doing his best to help the Serbian national team: “Divac is exceptionally positive towards us, he understands our obligations. There are a few more details to be taken care of regarding Bogdanovic, but as far as Bjelica goes it’s done. Bogdanovic underwent a surgery at the end of the season, so we have to keep an eye, but Vlade is a man who remembers the problems he had while playing with NBA teams and he is exceptionally willing to help.
That connection has been very important for the Serbian team as two important players are bound by the Kings at the moment – Bogdan Bogdanovic and Nemanja Bjelica. Djordjevic noted that Divac understands the situation as he also experienced the same problems during his career and has provided real help: “Huge! Divac is exceptionally positive towards us, he understands our obligations. There are a few more details to be taken care of regarding Bogdanovic but as far as Bjelica goes it’s done. Bogdanovic underwent a surgery at the end of the season, so we have to keep an eye, but Vlade is a man who remembers the problems he had while playing with NBA teams and he is exceptionally willing to help. We’ve been in touch for the past three or four nights talking about it. I’m so glad both of them are on his team because it will help them in their further careers”, Djordjevic told the Serbian press, per Basketballsphere.
Jovica Antonic, who is the assistant of Serbia’s head coach, Sasa Djordjevic, talked to the Serbian newspaper “Novosti” and confirmed that Nikola Jokic will not play for the national team in the World Cup Qualifiers in September. “We cannot count on Nikola Jokic to join us for the Qualifiers. However, Bogdan Bogdanovic and Nemanja Bjelica will be available for both matches,” Antonic said.
His transition to the NBA was certainly made easier by having Serbian legends Vlade Divac and Peja Stojakovic in the Kings managing board but he is looking forward to having Nemanja Bjelica on the court with him next season: “I already had two guys to speak to in Serbian over there which helped me a lot. Now, I have another one on the court which is going to help me even more.”
David Morrow: Basketball Without Borders Europe 2018 coaches will include Nikola Jokic, Nemanja Bjelica, Gary Harris, Bogdan Bogdanovic, Frank Kaminsky, Boban Marjanovic, Nikola Vucevic, Ana Dabovic and Sonja Petrovic. Also participating: Vlade Divac, Peja Stojakovic, Gregg Popovich.
The NBA, FIBA and the Basketball Federation of Serbia (KSS) on Tuesday announced the top 40 boys and 23 girls ages 17 and under from 25 countries who will participate in the 17th edition of Basketball Without Borders (BWB) Europe taking place from August 15-18 at Belgrade’s Zarkovo Sports Hall & Kosarkaski Centar. BWB is the NBA and FIBA’s global basketball development and community outreach program. The campers will be put through their paces by current NBA and FIBA players Nemanja Bjelica (Sacramento Kings, Serbia), Bogdan Bogdanovic (Kings, Serbia); Gary Harris (Denver Nuggets, USA); Nikola Jokic (Nuggets, Serbia), Frank Kaminsky (Charlotte Hornets, USA/Serbia), Boban Marjanovic (Los Angeles Clippers, Serbia) and Nik Vucevic (Orlando Magic, Montenegro). WNBA players Ana Dabovic (Los Angeles Sparks, Serbia) and Sonja Petrovic (Phoenix Mercury, Serbia) will also participate in the camp.
03 Aug 18
Shams Charania: Forward Nemanja Bjelica has agreed to a three-year, $20.5M deal with the Sacramento Kings, league sources tell Yahoo. Third year will be non-guaranteed.
David Aldridge: Sixers got involved with deal after Nemanja Bjelica pulled out of verbal agreement to sign with Philly. It left a need for another big/floor stretcher which @Mike Muscala (@PL_MBB !) can help fill. Career 38 percent shooter from three with Hawks.
After an agreement with the Philadelphia 76ers fell through, free agent Nemanja Bjelica and the Sacramento Kings plan to begin discussing a potential deal, league sources told Yahoo Sports. Kings general manager Vlade Divac reached out to Bjelica on Wednesday to explain his high value in the NBA versus leaving for Europe, league sources said.
Bjelica originally agreed to a one-year, $4.4 million deal with the 76ers, but reconsidered the agreement due to family, professional and personal concerns. In Sacramento, both sides could find a longer-term deal.
Shams Charania: Forward Nemanja Bjelica and the Kings plan to begin discussing potential deal, league sources tell Yahoo Sports. Bjelica represents a shooter on the wing/frontcourt, and a long-term fit makes sense.
David ‘Dubi’ Pick: Nemanja Bjelica will talk to his former Euroleague sweetheart Fenerbahce before his commits to a deal. Nicolo Melli will attack the NBA in 2019, Zeljko Obradovic needs a do-it-all star for the future. Not smart for Turks to allow rival clubs to snatch him long term.
The more he thought about uprooting them from Minnesota, a place the family had found comfort in over three seasons with the Timberwolves, to move to Philadelphia for about eight months, the more he started to second guess his decision. That led to his decision on Monday to inform the Sixers that he would not be signing their offer and instead has turned his attention toward a return to European basketball. He was the Euroleague MVP for Fenerbahce in 2015. “It’s not about coach or the Philly organization,” Bjelica told The Athletic in a phone conversation on Tuesday. “Brett Brown, he’s a great guy and a great coach. The most important thing for me is family and some kind of stability.”
With a school-age daughter and an infant son, Bjelica did not want to move his family to a new city for such a short time with the prospects of another move coming the following season. “I’m thankful for Philly for the opportunity, but I will always do what is the best for my family,” Bjelica said. “At that point, I was considering European life.”
After reaching the verbal agreement with Bjelica, the Sixers were waiting for him to travel to Philadelphia to take a physical and sign the contract, The Athletic’s Derek Bodner reported. They have already added Wilson Chandler this summer and also have Dario Saric, Robert Covington and Ben Simmons to give them plenty of versatility in the frontcourt. “I made a decision too quickly,” Bjelica said. “It’s not about Coach Brown and the Philly organization. It’s just about me and my family.
Adrian Wojnarowski: Free agent forward Nemanja Bjelica — who had agreed to a one-year deal with the 76ers — informed the team on Monday that he will stay in Europe this season, league sources tell ESPN. He never signed his contract with Philadelphia.
Jake Fischer: The Sixers are signing forward Nemanja Bjelica to the room mid-level exception, per source.
Bjelica will test the free-agent waters, and his shooting and size have several teams interested in him, including his buddy Ricky Rubio and the Utah Jazz, according to sources. If a team extends him an offer sheet of $6 million or more that would push Minnesota into the tax, the Wolves might have a hard time matching it.
The Timberwolves extended a qualifying offer to forward Nemanja Bjelica on Thursday, league sources told The Athletic, backing up Tom Thibodeau’s stated desire to keep the sweet-shooting Serbian on the roster next season. The move ensures that Bjelica will be a restricted free agent starting Sunday, which gives the Wolves the opportunity to match any offer he receives on the open market. But Bjelica’s future in Minnesota remains very much up in the air.
The Timberwolves extended a qualifying offer to forward Nemanja Bjelica on Thursday, league sources told The Athletic, backing up Tom Thibodeau’s stated desire to keep the sweet-shooting Serbian on the roster next season.
Bjelica has two options now. He can sign his qualifying offer, which is essentially a one-year contract for just over $4.9 million, or explore free agency to see if he can get more money, a longer-term deal or both from another team. He is expected to have discussions with other teams starting very early in the process, but a return to Minnesota has yet to be fully ruled out, sources said.
Emiliano Carchia: Serbia’s NT head coach Djordjevic on the NBAers in next FIBA Window: Bjelica WILL NOT play Teodosic WILL NOT play (injury) Jokic WILL NOT play (contract situation) Marjanovic WILL PLAY Bogdanovic WILL NOT PLAY (injury) but expected to be in September with Serbia
“I don’t know what I can say right now,” Bjelica said after Wednesday’s Game 5 loss. “I hope I will stay here. We will see. We had bad luck to play against Houston in the first round, but we have a great group of people here. First time in playoffs in 14 years is very important for us. I like it here.”
Paired so far with Crawford and either Teague or Jones, Rose gives the Wolves another scorer alongside Crawford on the team’s second unit. “I like it,” Thibodeau said. “Like anything else, the more they’re out there together, the better it’s going to be. I like the idea of what they can do. It puts a lot of pressure on the defense because all three guys can break you down. Then you add KAT and [Nemanja Bjelica] and that puts a lot of pressure on the defense, too.”
He’s also making himself some money. Bjelica is in the final year of a three-year, $11.7 million contract that’s a bargain in today’s NBA. He will become a restricted free agent in July, meaning the Wolves can match any offer he might receive. Scouts from two teams that will have money to spend this summer asked questions about Bjelica’s background, attitude and talent while attending a recent Wolves’ games.
At some point, Wolves coach/president of basketball operations Tom Thibodeau, General Manager Scott Layden and, of course, owner Glen Taylor must decide how much they can afford and with whom they can surround three players earning max contracts. “We’ve been planning,” Thibodeau said. “We’re worried about not only now, but we have to be sure we put the best team on the floor we can. That’s a big part of this. The biggest thing is everyone concentrating on us winning. We don’t want to get lost in anything but chasing excellence.”
For now, Bjelica will play on and decide his future for himself, his wife and two young children when it is time, namely this summer. “To be honest, I just try to play as good and hard as I can and at the end of the day, everybody will be fine,” Bjelica said. “I’m happy here. My family is happy. Sometimes I hate January because it’s so cold, but I kind of got used to it.”
In the seven games as a starter since [Jimmy Butler went down], Nemanja Bjelica is averaging 13.9 points, 8.3 rebounds and 1.4 steals in almost 38 minutes per game. All of the qualities that make him a perfect fit for a team starved for shooters and rangy defenders have bubbled to the surface with the beads of sweat that hardly formed in those short shifts earlier this season. “I keep telling people, I’m more than a shooter,” Bjelica said after a victory over the Bulls on Feb. 24. “I just try to play basketball. Not to have fun, just to try to help the team win the game.”
But Bjelica filling in so capably at small forward in the starting lineup, even bothering Kevin Durant into an 11-for-32 shooting night in a win over the Warriors, has been an enormous development as well with the team scratching and clawing in a tight Western Conference playoff field. “Bjelly can play a lot of different positions,” Andrew Wiggins said. “He can handle the ball, shoot. Great, great passer. Great vision. He fits in perfectly.”
In the 56 games that Butler has played, Bjelica topped 20 minutes just three times. All the while, Bjelica’s representatives have maintained that the future restricted free agent would produce if he was just given more of an opportunity. Now that the opportunity is upon him, he is walking that walk. “He’s a pro’s pro,” coach Tom Thibodeau said. “He can play short minutes, he can play long minutes. He can start. You can bring him off the bench. He plays multiple positions. The shooting and the moving without the ball, he adds a lot to our team. The length is critical, and he probably rebounds the ball better than he’s given credit for.”
Jon Krawczynski: Nemanja Bjelica starting tonight for Butler. Thibs says they’ll go game by game depending on matchups
The NBA has suspended Orlando Magic guard Arron Afflalo two games for throwing a punch at Minnesota’s Nemanja Bjelica in Wednesday night’s game, the league announced Thursday. The 32-year-old Afflalo will forfeit $32,119 in salary in the two games.
Referees gave both players their second technical fouls of the game, triggering their automatic ejections. “It’s an unfortunate incident, just competitive nature, an isolated incident,” Afflalo said Wednesday. “I’m very proud of my teammates. They stayed composed. Through all of that, they put up a great fight. Regardless of the energy that was sparked from that, us getting a win last night and showing some fight figuratively — for me literally but for them figuratively — was a great thing.”
“It was nothing personal,” Afflalo added. “I don’t know him. But that happens all the time. It’s just unfortunate that it escalated to where it ended between us. I’ll try to handle it a little bit better next time.”
Arron Afflalo and Minnesota Timberwolves forward Nemanja Bjelica were ejected with 7:58 left in the second quarter when they got into a fight while the game was being played. Afflalo threw at least one punch in the fight, which came four minutes after both players had been assessed technical fouls. “I don’t want to feel like a victim here, that’s part of the game,” Bjelica said. “But he took a swing at me, and I was just trying to protect myself, first of all, and to calm him down because he was wild. “I don’t know what’s wrong with that guy, but at that point I have to protect myself and my family.”
Jerry Zgoda: More Bjelica: “Everybody who knows me knows I’m a calm guy. I know how those things work. I was raised on the streets, but I’m a professional basketball player. I will never fight in a game. One more time, I don’t want to feel like I’m a victim here.”
Allan Horton: Bjelica postgame on his altercation with Afflalo… “I was just trying to protect myself & thank god I reacted that way [moving back to avoid the punch]. He was wild, I don’t know what’s wrong with that guy but I was just trying to protect myself.”
Josh Robbins: Arron Afflalo and Nemanja Bjelica got into a dust-up just now, and Afflalo threw a right-handed punch to Bjelica’s face. A few minutes earlier, the two players received a double-technical foul.
Bjelica has missed 11 games since sustaining the injury Nov. 22 against Orlando. “It’s probably going to be at least another week or so,’’ Thibodeau said. “So you have to be patient. He’s doing a lot better. But we want to make sure he’s completely ready.’’
12 Dec 17