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Teams reluctant to pursue Vasilije Micic due personal demands, OKC’s asking price – report

Photo: Anadolu Efes

The price to pay in order to acquire Vasilije Micic doesn’t sound engaging for several teams around the NBA. 

According to an anonymous Western Conference executive that was talked to by Heavy’s Sean Deveney, the Oklahoma City Thunder — who holds Micic’s draft rights — is looking for a much-preferred first-round pick in order to place the Serbian standout for a trade. With this certain demand, clubs found it “little too much” that they didn’t entertain a possibility to land him. 

Any team looking to acquire Micic would have to give Oklahoma City some draft compensation—preferably a first-rounder, though it’s possible the price could have been brought down. “I think that was where it was a little too much for teams,” one Western Conference executive said. “No one wanted to give up a pick plus everything else it would take. The guy can play, I think he’d be good in the NBA. But no one wanted to give up picks and money for him.”

Added by Deveney, the settled terms of Vicic in order to leave the Anadolu Efes and pivot towards the NBA hugely reduced the interest of teams to go for him. 

First, there was Micic himself. To ditch Efes and head to the NBA, Micic wanted a few things—a salary in the $6-7 million per year range, a starting spot (or, at least, starter-type minutes), and a role with a contending team. That eliminated a chunk of NBA interest off the bat.

Contending teams like the Milwaukee Bucks, Denver Nuggets and the Chicago Bulls have expressed their intent to pursue Micic. In the end, he went on to sign a deal to return for Efes. 

Micic, 28, made a name for himself as the main man of the said franchise, as he led them to two EuroLeague titles while gaining the Finals MVP honors for the past two seasons. He was also named the tournament’s best player in 2021. 

Career-wise, he gave himself another chance to solidify his worth of being a prolific NBA asset in the near future by remaining in Efes. While he is not ruling out a possibility to enter the association, his decision stands ideal for his current position as one of the top players of EuroLeague. 

Once he leads Anadolu towards an elusive three-peat championship, interest will only further grow amongst the NBA teams that will need his playmaking and stellar scoring at the point. 

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