After several weeks of speculation, the Clippers officially re-signed forward Hedo Turkoglu to a one-year deal on Friday. Per team policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed, but the contract is assumed to be the for veteran’s minimum. Turkoglu, 35, contemplated retirement this offseason, before ultimately deciding to return.
Turkoglu signed with the Clippers on January 10, playing 38 games and averaging 3.0 points and 2.3 rebounds in 10.0 minutes last season.
At this stage of his career, he is nothing more a stretch 4 with some solid point-forward skills. While he probably sounds better in theory than he really is, he still had some productive stretches last season. He’s a better rebounder (his 8.2 rebounds per 36 minutes were a career high) and defender than given credit for, he shot a career-high 44 percent on 3-pointers, and he managed to post his best win shares per 48 minutes in three years. In a lot of ways, he’s a poor, poor man’s Boris Diaw.
“We are happy to welcome Hedo back to the Clippers,” Doc Rivers said in the team’s press release. “Hedo is a versatile, veteran presence who contributed to the championship culture we are building in Los Angeles.”
Turkoglu is a ClipperBlog favorite because his passing and 3-point shooting provide the Clippers with a unique and versatile look offensively, and he grasped Rivers’ complex defensive scheme rather effortlessly. Though it’s unclear how Rivers plans to divide the minutes in the crowded frontcourt, Turkoglu will have a legitimate shot to earn minutes ahead of Glen Davis and Ekpe Udoh as the fourth big, especially in small ball matchups.
The Clippers roster now stands at 14, and they are unlikely to sign another player before the season starts.