Israeli NBA star Caspi to play for champions Golden State

Israeli NBA player, Omri Casspi attends a special basketball workshop with Israeli kids in Ramla on August 7, 2016. (Photo: Avi Dishi/Flash90)

Israel’s first-ever NBA player, Omri Caspi, has signed with this year’s champions, the Golden State Warriors.

After eight years in the NBA and a poor season last year, 29 year-old Caspi is now ironically taking a pay cut in a bid for title honors.

During the last two seasons Caspi earned an average of $3 million, which will drop to $2.1 million with Golden State, the minimum for a player of his status.

Caspi, described by one commentator as a “vagabond,” spent last season in three separate clubs: Sacramento where he clashed with coach Dave Joerger, New Orleans where he was soon injured and finally Minnesota where he averaged just 5.2 points per game over the season.

Prior to last season Caspi averaged 8.2 points per game with Sacramento, Cleveland, Houston, New Orleans and Minnesota. Overall he has made more regular season appearances than any other player without ever playing in the playoffs.

Despite the recent drop in performance, Golden State were so keen to sign Caspi that they called him one minute after the window opened when player negotiations were permitted on July 1, according to his father Shimon.

With Golden State he will play alongside top class players like Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, Kevin Durant and Draymond Green.

“I’m happy to have received this amazing opportunity. This is a childhood dream that has come true, to play for such a respected team, alongside such great players. I hope to start training soon and begin the hard work,” Caspi said in a statement.