Pelicans second-round pick Marcos Louzada Silva – aka Didi Louzada – will sign with the Sydney Kings as part of the National Basketball League’s “Next Stars” program, a source tells Jonathan Givony of ESPN.com (Twitter link)
Louzada, a 6’5″ shooting guard, has spent the last two seasons playing for Franca in Brazil, earning a Novo Basquete Brasil All-Star nod earlier this year. The Pelicans will acquire his draft rights in a trade with the Hawks that was agreed upon on draft day. He was selected 35th overall.
With three rookies – Zion Williamson, Jaxson Hayes, and Nickeil Alexander-Walker – set to join their roster, the Pelicans have opted to go the draft-and-stash route with Louzada, who will have an NBA out clause for next summer in his deal with the Kings, per Givony. He’ll also receive English tutoring while he plays in Australia, Givony adds.
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The NBL’s Next Stars program, introduced in 2018, gives teams an extra roster spot for import prospects. It paid a salary of approximately $78K in its initial season.