Omri Casspi, first Israeli to play in NBA, signs with champion Golden State Warriors


(JTA) — Omri Casspi, the first Israeli to play in the National Basketball Association, signed a one-year contract with the 2017 champion Golden State Warriors.

Casspi, 29, and the Warriors agreed to the contract early Wednesday morning, according to reports. He is expected to provide some offense off the bench for a club that will be seeking its third title in four seasons.

“I’m happy to have received this amazing opportunity,” Casspi said in a statement, The Jerusalem Post reported. “This is a childhood dream that has come true, to play for such a respected team, alongside such great players. I hope to start training soon and begin the hard work.”

Casspi, who has averaged 8.2 points and 4.1 rebounds per game over his eight-year NBA career with five teams, was a first-round draft pick in 2009 by the Sacramento Kings. The 6-9 forward was a member of the championship Maccabi Tel Aviv team in Israel before making himself available for the NBA draft.

Casspi was signed in March as a free agent by the Minnesota Timberwolves nearly a month after being waived by the New Orleans Pelicans — his second stint with the team — after breaking his thumb in his debut with the club. He has also played for the Cleveland Cavaliers and Houston Rockets.

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