The New Orleans Pelicans came to terms with forward Jeff Adrien on a one-year, non-guaranteed contract Monday night, sources close to The Advocate confirmed.
This makes the second non-guaranteed deal the Pelicans have inked this offseason. Adrien joins summer league standout Bryce DeJean-Jones as an invitee to the team’s preseason camp with an opportunity to win a spot on the roster.
Adrien, a 6-foot-7 journeyman, has played for five different teams in five seasons and travelled overseas as well. His most recent NBA stint was a 17-game layover with the Minnesota Timberwolves early last season before he was waived on Jan. 9.
Then Adrien went overseas to play for the Guangdong Southern Tigers of the Chinese Basketball Association. He’s also played in Spain, Italy, Russia and the NBA Developmental League.
The Pelicans’ front office likes Adrien’s toughness under the basket and considers him a hard-nosed defender who rebounds very well for his size. His numbers during sporadic periods of NBA playing time back up the assertion.
Adrien’s 17.5 percent total rebounding percentage (11.5 offensive and 23.9 defensive) are impressive numbers for a 6-foot-7 swingman. And his 10.9 points in just 25 minutes per game with the Milwaukee Bucks in 2013-14 prove he can contribute off the bench.
Despite being named first-team all-Big East and helping lead the Connecticut Huskies to the 2009 Final Four, Adrien went undrafted after his senior year. He averaged a double-double (13.7 points, 10 rebounds) in one of college basketball’s premier conferences but it wasn’t enough to carve him an easy path to the NBA.
Now, he’ll have the chance to earn it once again.
“There are no days off when you’re trying to make a team and stay on a roster,” Adrien said in a 2013 interview. “You just have to fight every day.”