The Celtics have signed center Darko Milicic to a one-year contract, two league sources tell the Globe’s Gary Washburn. A league source tells A. Sherrod Blakely of CSNNE.com that the deal is for the veteran minimum.
Milicic was the No. 2 overall pick in the 2003 NBA Draft, chosen ahead of Carmelo Anthony, Chris Bosh, and Dwyane Wade. He has famously failed to live up to those lofty expectations, averaging 6.0 points and 4.2 rebounds over his career. The 7-footer averaged 4.6 points and 3.3 rebounds for Minnesota last season.
Milicic becomes the 14th player under contract on the Celtics roster. He adds to the team’s frontcourt depth, which is perhaps their biggest weakness. After Kevin Garnett and Brandon Bass, Chris Wilcox, rookie Jared Sullinger, veteran center Jason Collins, and Milicic should all compete for playing time. Wilcox looks like the surest thing of that group, though Milicic and Sullinger have the chance to play valuable minutes. Jeff Green could also slide into the power forward role in some rotations.
Milicic is just 27-years-old. His signing leaves one roster spot open for end-of-the-roster players with non-guaranteed contracts like Kris Joseph, Dionte Christmas, and Jamar Smith.