Shalom Life | December 26, 2014

2014 A Sad Story for Gal Mekel as Pelicans Release Him

The Israeli point guard, who had only signed with the New Orleans squad two weeks ago, averaged 1.5 points and 3.3 assists in four games

By: Daniel Koren

Published: December 22nd, 2014 in Sports » Local

2014 A Sad Story for Gal Mekel as Pelicans Release Him

Winding down on 2014, it hasn't been an exactly fabulous year for the second Israeli player in the NBA, Gal Mekel, particularly the last few months.

And while we all hoped his luck would change after the New Orleans Pelicans signed him two weeks ago, it seems that story is also deemed to be short-lived.

In November, the Dallas Mavericks decided to release Mekel, who then joined the free agent market. The injury-riddled Indiana Pacers were anxious to pick him up, but due to a rare, visa-related issue, they were unable to.

Many basketball experts also wondered, when 100 other foreign players in the NBA rarely have such problems, if Mekel was being singled out.

After signing with New Orleans, Mekel is now, again, a free agent on the market, after appearing in four games with them, averaging 1.5 points and 3.3 assists.

Because the Pelicans signed Mekel to a two-year, non-guaranteed contract, they were able to cite a clause which enabled them to release the Israeli point guard without any compensation. However, they did note that they'd be potentially re-signing him later on in the season.

c"We just felt like it was a move that we wanted to take a look at him," head coach Monty Williams said. "We thought he did a good job, (but) there are some particulars financially that I am not going to discuss, that's for Dell and his staff (to discuss). They do a good job of keeping the organization in a good place. We like (Mekel) a lot. That doesn't mean we won't bring him back. But at this point we felt like we were going to go in a different direction."

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