Nigel Hayes strengthens Zalgiris’ frontcourt
Zalgiris is set to continue its’ preparations for the upcoming season and has agreed to a deal with forward Nigel Hayes. The 24 year-old joins the Lithuanian champions on a 1+1 contract basis.
“I am thrilled to join an organization of Zalgiris’ standing. I am excited about the opportunity to play for such a prestigious European team and coach. There’s been nothing but great things that I’ve heard about the organization, the fans and the city of Kaunas itself,” – said Hayes after signing the agreement.
Hayes spent last season in Istanbul, representing Galatasaray in the EuroCup tournament and guiding his team to the Turkish league Semi-Finals, where Galatasaray lost 0-3 against Anadolu Efes.
The American started in 8 of the team’s 10 games in the EuroCup, as he averaged 15.7 points, 5.6 rebounds, 1.8 assists, all while shooting at an impressive 57.4% clip from two-point range and 43.2% from beyond the arc. He cracked the top ten in both scoring and efficiency (17.8 ranking points) in the EuroCup regular season.
In the 34 games in the Turkish league, the forward put up 12.3 points, 5.2 rebounds and 13.7 ranking points per game.
Hayes started playing professional basketball in the 2017-2018 season after four years at the University of Wisconsin. While he spent most of the season in the NBA G League, he had a shot with the Los Angeles Lakers, Toronto Raptors and Sacramento Kings.