As was expected, Lucas Nogueira will return to Spain next season to continue his development per a report from the AJC's Chris Vivlamore. Atlanta Hawks general manager talked about the decision with the Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Monday:
"We are very encouraged by what we've seen from Lucas this summer," general manager Danny Ferry told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution Monday. "Going back to Estudiantes will allow him to continue develop while also playing meaningful minutes against very good competition. We will closely monitor his progress as he works towards his goals as a basketball player."
Nogueira performed well at the Vegas Summer League for Atlanta but it was clear that he still needed to add strength and to further refine his play. Nogueira had expressed a desire to play for the Hawks next year but Atlanta's crowded frontcourt might not provide a consistent opportunity for playing time.
Atlanta has 14 players currently under contract although Shelvin Mack and Mike Scott's deals are not guaranteed. Nogueira returning to Spain will free up approximately $1.4 million in cap room for the Hawks.
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