For Mirza Teletovic, a deadline looms as he tries to adjust to NBA ... and life

Debby Wong-US PRESSWIRE

Scott Cacciola of the Wall Street Journal takes a look at Mirza Teletovic's first few weeks in the NBA. Signed to a three year, $10 million deal, Europe's best shooter has fallen on hard times. He played well in garbage time vs. Orlando Friday night. In six and a half minutes, the Bosnian national hero scored five points on 2-for-4 shooting, including 1-for-2 from deep, grabbed five boards, handed out two assists and generally looked comfortable doing it.

Still, the numbers don't lie. So far, in three games, he's shooting 33.3 percent overall, 27.3 percent from deep and has had his problems with defensive assignments. Everyone has been willing to give him a chance, but Avery Johnson has said he hopes to settle on a nine-man rotation by next week, so the 6'9" 27-year-old has limited time to prove himself. This, after taking a pay cut before he ever stepped on an NBA court and using nearly $2 million of his own money to buy out his Spanish League contract.

He made a few tactical mistakes on arrival, like bulking up to the point where his arms were tired and his shots were short. And he told Cacciola, "You have to get used to it. It's not only basketball; it's life around basketball. It'll take time. But I'm confident." One thing that Teletovic didn't say is that Hurricane Sandy forced him, his wife and two children out of their apartment along the Hudson River. Still, as Reggie Evans notes, there is talent there. "He can get hot," Evans said. "When he's hot, he's hot. And I've seen him hot."

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