Friday, December 20th, 2013 at 11:05 am  |  one response

New Orleans Pelicans Signing Alexis Ajinca to Two-Year Deal

According to French center Alexis Ajinca’s agent, the big fella has reached a two-year agreement with the Pelicans. Per the Times-Picayune:

The New Orleans Pelicans have reached a two-year contract agreement with 7-foot-2 French center Alexis Ajinca, and he will join the team in Portland before Saturday’s game, his agent Mark Bartelstein said by telephone Thursday night.

Ajinca was able to work out a buyout agreement with his Euro League team, Strasbourg. before agreeing to the Pelicans’ deal. He was the 20th overall pick in the 2008 NBA Draft by the Charlotte Bobcats, who eventually traded him to the Dallas Mavericks before the 2010-11 season. He played only a half season with the Mavericks before he was traded to the Toronto Raptors.

“He’s excited to join the Pelicans,” Bartelstein said.

The Pelicans are desperate for more depth at center. Jason Smith is their starting center, but he’s a natural power forward. Backup center Greg Stiemsma has been out since mid-November with a sprained left knee.

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  • LLC#12

    I had a feeling he would try to make the jump to the NBA once the Euroleagues first round ended, as Strasbourg were almost certainly going to go out in the first round, and he has been playing very well. Too well to be content with the French domestic league.
    It’s been a good year for French basketball though, their first Eurobasket Gold, 2 teams in the Euroleague (Nanterre and Strasbourg) for the first time in a long time, and a very large pool of French NBA players, with Batum and Parker both having excellent seasons.