JULY 25: The Pelicans have officially signed Melli, the team announced today in a press release. New Orleans used its room exception to complete the signing.
JUNE 30: The Pelicans are finalizing a deal with Italian power forward Nicolo Melli, tweets ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. It’s a two-year, $8MM deal, according to Wojnarowski, who confirms (via Twitter) that the two sides are in agreement.
Will Guillory of The Athletic confirms the report, adding that the Pelicans see the 6’9″ Melli as an efficient passer who can space the floor (Twitter link). The 28-year-old played for Fenerbahce this season and was the leading scorer in the EuroLeague Finals.
Melli has been playing professionally in Europe for more than a decade. He also has extensive international experience, starting with Italy’s Junior National Team in 2007.
He will be part of a revamped team in New Orleans as the Pelicans build around No. 1 draft pick Zion Williamson and No. 8 selection Jaxson Hayes, along with the package of players they’re getting from the Lakers in the Anthony Davis trade.