Calathes drafted by Wolves

Former Gator Nick Calathes has a contract to play for Greek powerhouse Panathinaikos for at least one season.

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Published: Thursday, June 25, 2009 at 9:46 p.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, June 25, 2009 at 9:46 p.m.

Former Gator point guard Nick Calathes was selected in the NBA draft Thursday night by the Minnesota Timberwolves in the second round with the last of the Wolves' five picks on the night, the 45th pick overall.

Calathes signed a contract last month to play with reigning Euroleague Basketball champion Panathinaikos. It's a two-year contract with an option for a third year that could pay him up to $2 million a season with incentives, but the Wolves now own the draft rights to Calathes.

There's still no telling where Calathes will play next season. He could go to Greece, or Minnesota could pay a $500,000 buyout in his contract that would free him up to play in the NBA.

Panathinaikos recently signed former Indiana Pacer Sarunas Jasikevicius to play point guard, a move that could impact Calathes' decision. Most likely, however, Calathes will play at least one season in Greece in an effort to boost his value.

As a second round pick, Calathes and the Timberwolves are not bound by the NBA's first-round pay scale. Therefore, Calathes could earn great bargaining leverage if he plays well and convinces his NBA rights-holders to offer him more money to return to the U.S.

Also, in Greece Calathes would join his older brother, Pat, who is playing professionally in the Euroleague for Greek team Maroussi.

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