Bjelica is nursing a leg injury and won't suit up for Serbia in the 2016 Summer Olympics, Yugobasket reports.
Bjelica will remain in the United States over the next several weeks to receive further treatment on the leg injury, but he should be at full health entering 2016-17. The 6-foot-10 forward's role with the Timberwolves fluctuated throughout his rookie season, and he finished with averages of 5.1 points (on 46.8% shooting), 3.5 rebounds and 1.4 assists across 17.9 minutes per game in his 60 appearances.
Once selected in the 2010 NBA Draft, Bjelica didn't immediately transition into the NBA. Instead, he elected to remain in Serbia where he concluded his Euroleague career as the 2015 MVP. The 27-year-old finally made his NBA debut this season, and introduced himself to the league by drilling multiple treys in five of his first nine appearances. However, a knee injury lead the rookie to miss time, and subsequently fall out of coach Sam Mitchell's rotation. Come April, Bjelica ended his season in the same fashion he started it; the Serbian rejoined the rotation and shot over 63 percent from beyond the arc while averaging 10.0 points per tilt. Though his role for the 2016 season largely depends on who the
Nemanja Bjelica contributed 11 points (3-7 FG, 1-3 3Pt, 4-4 FT), 14 rebounds, and one assist in 29 minutes during the Minnesota Timberwolves ' 129-105 loss to the Rockets on Monday.
Bjelica continues to see increased opportunities lately, and that's two double-doubles in a row for the 27-year-old rookie. Over the last three games, he is averaging 13.3 points, 9.3 rebounds, and 2.7 assists in 28 minutes. Wednesday's season finale against the injury-depleted Pelicans provides one final chance for Bjelica to showcase his skills in 2015-16.
Nemanja Bjelica contributed 11 points (4-6 FG, 2-3 3Pt, 1-2 FT), 10 rebounds, five assists, a steal and a block over 30 minutes in Saturday's 106-105 victory over the Trail Blazers.
The sophomore big man posted double-digit scoring for the third time in the last five games, and hauled in double-digit boards for the first time since way back on Nov. 7 versus the Bulls. Bjelica has seen a nice boost in playing time over the last nine games, even outpacing starter Gorgui Dieng in some games. He could conceivably draw a start in one or both of Minnesota's final two contests.
Nemanja Bjelica tallied 18 points (6-7 FG, 4-5 3Pt, 2-2 FT), four rebounds and two assists over 26 minutes in Thursday's 105-97 victory over the Kings.
The big man was able to receive generous minutes off the bench against one of the more vulnerable frontcourts in the league, facilitating a season-high scoring effort. Bjelica has seen an appreciable uptick in playing time over the last eight games, and saw that trend continue Thursday despite starter Gorgui Dieng also receiving a healthy allotment of minutes. It remains to be seen how coach Sam Mitchell will opt to deploy his frontcourt rotation for the season's remaining games.
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