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Kleiza not excluding Europe

By Nikos Varlas/

It’s not exactly a secret that after the drastic changes in Toronto “the amnesty provision likely will be used on either Linas Kleiza or Andrea Bargnani”, as Toronto Star reported. Bargnani already left the team via the trade that send him to the Knicks, so that leaves Kleiza as the only candidate for amnesty.

The Lithuanian forward used the option in his contract in order to extend it for next season, an expected move since his contract pays him 4,6 million dollars annually. If Toronto decides to amnesty him, then he will be fully compensated and a free agent. According to Eurohoops sources, the player and his representatives are preparing for this possibility and Kleiza himself doesn’t exclude a return to Europe.

After all he was the top Euroleague scorer back in the 2009-10 season as a member of Olympiacos and he is among the key player of Lithuanian national team. However the real question is if there is a market capable of paying him. Only two teams at this point, CSKA Moscow and Fenerbahce/ Ulker have enough money to lure him. On the other hand, if he decides to sign a short term deal with less money and practically be paid by Toronto, then the plot thickens…

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  • gd

    Not quite correct. If he’s amnestied, then he goes onto the amnesty waiver wire (where any team under the cap can claim him and pay him a portion of his salary, with Toronto paying the balance). Only if he clears waivers will he be a free agent.

  • Giorgios

    As an Olympiakos fan I do NOT want him back. He has a terrible attitude, he never plays defense, and he is an enormous black hole on offense.

    In addition to that, since his knee injury, he cannot stay healthy for more than 20 games in a season.

    If Olympiakos signed him, it would be like Arvydas Macijauskas all over again.

    • Giannis

      I think you exaggerate a bit. According to you he was bad at both defence and offence and despite that he is an NBAer with an enormous salary for a european club. Something goes wrong.

      • Jake

        Kleiza had micro-fracture knee surgery since he played with Olympiacos. He would not even last 2 months of the season before a season ending knee problem.

        He is completely washed up. Any Euroleague team that gives him a big contract is very stupid.


      You are quite alright my friend that you do not want him. I also DO NOT WANT HIM because he will be a negative factor for the psychology and chemistry of the team……I remember distinctly his reactions when he was to be replaced during the match…..I do bot question his ability and talent, as he is extremely good, but behaviour-wise he is the same personality as Rudy Fernandez….

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  • Automatos

    He should join his ex team the Euroleague champions Olympiakos. He came so close to a Euroleague crown with them but lost in the final when Olympiakos fell to Barcelona. I think there’s a good chance he would discover his old form in Europe. He’s needs change to revive his career.

  • Manoskol

    Linas come back to Olympiakos…. for the Three -Peat!!!