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Report: Nikola Milutinov to sign with CSKA Moscow

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The Spurs’ 2015 first-round pick opting to stay in Europe

Olympiacos Piraeus v CSKA Moscow - Turkish Airlines EuroLeague Photo by Panagiotis Moschandreou/Euroleague Basketball via Getty Images

Nikola Milutinov is reportedly signing a three-year €9M contract with Russian professional basketball team CSKA Moscow, according to a report by Sportando CEO Emiliano Carchia. The deal would keep the Serbian center competing in the Euroleague and out of the NBA for the time being.

San Antonio selected the 25-year-old Greek League All-Star 26th overall in the first round of the 2015 NBA Draft, and have kept him stashed overseas for the last five seasons. The Spurs will continue to retain his draft rights, but all indications imply the big man has no plans to come stateside anytime soon.

Although there’s no word detailing a buyout clause in Milutinov’s impending contract agreement, the Silver and Black haven’t shown public interest in acquiring the seven-footer. Jakob Poeltl, Chimezie Metu, and Drew Eubanks are under contract, and PATFO have a pair of 2020 draft picks at their disposal, but plans could change with Eubanks and Poeltl potentially set to hit free agency this Summer.

Nikola could become a solid addition down the road, or he could easily become another forgotten draft and stash project like Livio Jean-Charles. While performance and skill-level prevented Jean-Charles from joining the big league club, a comfortable situation abroad might stop Nikola Milutinov and the San Antonio Spurs from making a connection.