Prior to NBA:
Fenerbahce Ulker / Serbia
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PROFESSIONAL NOTES: Spent the last two seasons with Fenerbahce in the TBL and the previous three with Caja Laboral in Spain… 2014-15: With Fenerbahce Ulker, averaged 11.5 points and 8.2 rebounds in 63 combined games between Euroleague and Turkish Basketball League (TBL) play… Shot 54.1% from the floor and 37.4% from three-point range… Named Euroleague MVP after averaging 12.1 points and 8.5 rebounds in 27.8 minutes during league play… Helped lead Fenerbahce to the Euroleague Final Four for the first time in franchise history before losing in the semi-finals to Real Madrid… Named to the 2014-15 All-Euroleague First Team and the 2014-15 Euroleague March MVP… 2013-14: In his first season with Fenerbahce Ulker, averaged 8.5 points and 5.8 rebounds in 37 games during TBL play… Played in 24 games during Euroleague play, averaging 10.4 points and 6.1 rebounds… 2012-13: With Caja Laboral in Spain’s Liga ACB, averaged 9.8 points and 5.7 rebounds in 33 league games… In 26 Euroleague games, averaged 9.9 points and 4.8 rebounds per game… 2011-12: With Caja Laboral, averaged 6.2 points and 3.8 rebounds in 40 ACB games… Averaged 4.8 points and 2.1 rebounds in 10 Euroleague games… 2010-11: In his first season with Caja Laboral, averaged 3.9 points and 2.0 rebounds in 22 league games… Averaged 1.2 points and 1.7 rebounds in 13 Euroleague contests… 2009-10: With Crvena Zvezda in Serbia’s KLS league… Averaged 18.9 points and 7.4 rebounds in 16 KLS games… Played in 12 Eurocup games, averaging 8.5 points and 5.8 rebounds… 2008-09: In his first season with Crvena Zvezda, averaged 4.6 points and 2.8 rebounds in 11 KLS games… Averaged 4.8 points and 1.8 rebounds in 12 Eurocup games… 2007-08: Began his professional career with Traiskirchen in the Austrian Basketball League (ABL), averaging 8.5 points and 3.5 rebounds in 26 games.
INTERNATIONAL NOTES: Member of the Serbian Senior National Team since 2009… Most recently competed with Serbia in EuroBasket 2015, averaged a team-high 13.9 points and 6.6 rebounds per game in Serbia’s fourth place finish… Averaged 11.9 points and 6.9 rebounds per game as Serbia won the silver medal in the 2014 FIBA Basketball World Cup… Shot 43.2% from the floor and 81.6% from the free throw line… A member of the 2009 European Championship squad that won a silver medal, averaging 2.6 points and 5.1 rebounds in minutes per game… Also competed with the team at the 2010 FIBA World Championship, as well as the 2011 and 2013 European Championships.
PERSONAL NOTES: Born May 9, 1988 in Belgrade, Serbia… Bjelica is the son of Milovan and Slavica Bjelica… He credits legendary Serbian and European coach Svetislav Pesic with much of his basketball development… Former NBA player Nenad Krstic was the best man at Bjelica’s wedding… Twitter handle: @Bjelica88… Name is pronounced NEH-men-yah bee-a-lihzt-ah.
Shoe Size: 14
Why did you choose your current uniform number: 8 was taken so I chose 88.
What are your hobbies/pastimes: Spending time with family, my wife and daughter. I also like to watch tennis.
What type of pet do you currently have: A dog named Gigi Maltise, I got it for my daughter.
An athlete you’d pay to watch/favorite basketball player: Allen Iverson