Clippers can level up by signing underrated international star

The Clippers can get another rotation-level player without spending a fortune.
Los Angeles Clippers v Sacramento Kings
Los Angeles Clippers v Sacramento Kings / Ezra Shaw/GettyImages

The Clippers are in franchise purgatory. The group is only a true title contender if you subscribe to the notion that Kawhi Leonard will ever be healthy enough for a deep postseason run—it's more likely someone in Oregon will find Bigfoot. The organization overplayed its hand and nearly exhausted all future assets, so a dramatic re-set is also unlikely. 

Operating around the margins like a small market club could work for some time, but that's not quite Steve Ballmer's style. Organizations often mirror the personality of the owner, and Balmer is a go-getter. It's time for management to start to take some bold swings in an effort to revitalize this roster. The best place to start is untapped assets with significant upside.

According to Eurobasket journalist Mihalis Stefanou, Sasha Vezenkov informed the Sacramento Kings that he doesn't intend to return for the second year of his deal. The former Euroleague MVP has to decide between returning to Europe or finding a new situation in the NBA.

The pitch for the Clippers to trade for Sasha Vezenkov

Vezenkov has a valid case for desiring a change of scenery. Mike Brown's unwavering support of Harrison Barnes created a log jam at forward that was too much to overcome. Despite his declining numbers and defensive ability, Barnes started every game of the season.
Vezenkov had a far shorter leash despite showing promise in limited minutes. He never had a consistent spot in the rotation, and a pair of ankle injuries stifled any sliver of momentum.

Just a year ago, Vezenkov was establishing himself as one of the most talented players abroad. What he lacks in athletic prowess, he makes up for in fundamentals. While at Olympiacos in Greece, he was the main offensive engine, flashing premier screen navigation and a lightning-fast lefty release. He can fill it up from beyond the arc and mid-range, providing value as a cutter darting towards the cup. His tools can easily translate to the NBA if given the right opportunity.

Any worry would come on the defensive end. Vezenkov tends to lumber and struggles with pick-and-rolls and switches on the perimeter. If nothing else, he competes. Surrounded by the right group, he can still contribute as a positive team defender.

At 28 years old, Vezenkov can't be a project, but given time, he can extinguish those concerns. Ty Lue can harness his abilities and help him adapt to the American style of play. This is a low-risk, high-reward gamble that can instantly pay off.