Former Grizzlies’ guard turned Euroleague star Nick Calathes plans NBA return

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Nick Calathes had an eventful couple of seasons with the Memphis Grizzlies, but not for the reasons he would have hoped. First, he got into a confrontation with Tony Allen that led to Allen’s suspension for a game. Then, Calathes was suspended for 20 games for violation of the NBA’s drug policy — he tested positive for Tamoxifen, which is banned because it is a masking agent for PEDs, but he said was in the baldness treatment (Rogaine or minoxidil) that he took to deal with hair loss and was not a steroid issue at all.

Since he left the Grizzlies without a new deal in the summer of 2015 — they offered him a non-guaranteed deal he would hot take — he has played in the Greek league and put up big numbers. Now, he’s looking to come back to the NBA and land a job as a reserve point guard, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.

Guard Nick Calathes, a 6-foot-6 MVP candidate for EuroLeague power Panathinaikos of Athens, plans to rejoin the NBA as a free agent this summer, sources told ESPN.

One of the EuroLeague’s finest playmaking guards, Calathes is expected to attract significant NBA interest as a backup point guard.

Calathes was solid playmaking guard but not a good three-point shooter while in Memphis the first time around. That shooting issue has not changed, he is hitting 29.3 percent from deep this season for his Greek squad.

“Significant” is a relative term, but for the former second-round pick (No. 45) who was raised in Florida, he may well be able to land a deal as a number of teams like tall guards and want someone reliable off the bench. It’s not going to be a big, long-term deal in this market, but he’ll find something.