The NBA isn’t done with Darko Milicic yet. The former No. 2 pick and cautionary draft tale is headed to his sixth team when the Boston Celtics sign him next week for the veteran’s minimum, CSNNE.com reported.
The same outlet reported Milicic, 27, has a European club offer (ESPN reported it was Real Madrid) but will take the Celtics’ deal and become the team’s 14th player on the roster. He played for the Timberwolves the last two seasons, whose four-year, $20-million deal with the then even more unproven Milicic makes Boston’s low-risk deal look like a stroke of genius out of “Moneyball.” If he continues to underperform (his best year in the league was in 2010-11 at 8.8 points and 5.2 boards per game) the amount Boston committed to him is almost negligible. Should he show even a sliver of the promise that persuaded Detroit to take him ahead of Carmelo Anthony, Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade in 2003, as a no-frills 7-foot backup center, he’ll be a welcome surprise. His place in draft bust history is always framed within those All-Stars and league brand names behind him but even outside of the context of being a part of one of the best draft lotteries ever, his 6.0 points, 4.2 boards and 46 percent shooting would still measure up to being an enormous disappointment. It should be noted he averaged 12.3 points per game in 28 minutes for Orlando in its four playoff games in 2006-07, but it’s still not much of a high-water mark, and a small sample size at that.
Milicic will platoon with Chris Wilcox, Fab Melo and Jason Collins as backups for Kevin Garnett.
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