Size is one attribute that cannot be taught, and the Sacramento Kings invested in a substantial amount of it Friday by signing 21-year-old center Sim Bhullar.
Bhullar tweeted a photo of himself making the deal official:
Check out this video where Bleacher Report documents Bhullar's training leading up to the NBA:
This signing is particularly significant since Kings owner Vivek Ranadive is from India. Per NBA.com, Ranadive views this move as a huge step for the popularity of the sport in his home nation:
I've long believed that India is the next great frontier for the NBA, and adding a talented player like Sim only underscores the exponential growth basketball has experienced in that nation. While Sim is the first player of Indian descent to sign with an NBA franchise, he represents one of many that will emerge from that region as the game continues to garner more attention and generate ever-increasing passion among a new generation of Indian fans.
The towering Bhullar is a native of Canada, and he made quite a name for himself in the collegiate ranks, averaging 10.4 points, 7.8 rebounds and 3.4 blocks per game for the Aggies this past season.
Bhullar was an instant fan favorite during the summer league, despite averaging just 2.5 minutes per game through four contests, according to Jason Jones of The Sacramento Bee:
Sim Bhullar is in to the loudest applause I've heard for a backup in summer league in a while— Jason Jones (@mr_jasonjones) July 13, 2014
Although Bhullar isn't going to be gifted a roster spot by any means, Sean Cunningham of News10 in Sacramento likes his chances:
Sim Bhullar's opportunity with the Sacramento Kings is essentially a training camp deal. Definitely great opportunity to make roster.— Sean Cunningham (@News10Sean) August 15, 2014
Cunningham added that Bhullar is a candidate to make the team and be sent to the NBA D-League in order to further his development:
Sim Bhullar will more than likely find himself in the mix within Sacramento Kings system by way of DLeague affiliate Reno Big Horns.— Sean Cunningham (@News10Sean) August 15, 2014
The main factor working in Bhullar's favor is that the Kings don't have a ton of depth at center. Behind star DeMarcus Cousins, there isn't much to speak of, with most guys on the team listed at forward: Jason Thompson, Derrick Williams, Jeremy Tyler, Eric Moreland, Carl Landry, Reggie Evans, Rudy Gay.
Due to Bhullar's size and shot-blocking ability alone, he could very well move into that backup spot.
Will Bhullar make the Kings' 2014-15 roster?
Bhullar is unlikely to ever be a starter in the NBA since he lacks the stamina and athleticism needed to play big minutes, but he can still be a role player. Simply putting him near the basket defensively is bound to force opposing players to change their approach.
He also has a deceptively efficient offensive game, which figures to improve as he continues to learn and develop his skills.
This is a low-risk, high-reward move by the Kings that could very well pay dividends in the form of a productive bench player moving forward.
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