Posted by Royce Young
It's been a few days, so it's time for another marginal NBA player to sign in Europe. The latest is Nuggets big man Timofey Mozgov, who is planning to return to play in his native Russia, according to Sports.ru.
Mozgov would play for BC Khimki, who is who he was with from 2006-10 before coming to the NBA after being drafted by the Knicks last year.
The report indicates that the deal is just for the lockout, meaning that Mozgov will have an opt-out clause to return to the NBA if the lockout doesn't wipe out games.
Depending on Nene's situation in Denver, Mozgov could be a very important piece. He's already got a good amount of value to the organization as a quality backup to the Brazilian big man and a piece of the Carmelo Anthony trade, but if the Nuggets can't keep Nene, he immediately becomes starting material. Probably not ideal for the Nuggets, but it could be reality.
Mozgov, who is 7-1 and can run a little, had a decent rookie season in New York and Denver averaging 3.6 points and 2.7 rebounds per game. All of that came in limited, spot minutes, but his role could increase next year.
Obviously he's comfortable playing in Europe, specifically Russia, since, you know, he's from there. There won't be any surprises for Mozgov and he's going to handle everything fine. He's currently under contract in the NBA with the Nuggets, so there will be some FIBA issues to sort out, but none of that comes into play unless the NBA misses games.