Shalom Life | November 18, 2014

Visa Issue May Thwart Indiana's Plans of Signing Mekel

A procedural delay may stop the Israeli point guard from joining the Pacers

By: Daniel Koren

Published: November 7th, 2014 in Sports » Local

Visa Issue May Thwart Indiana's Plans of Signing Mekel

Last week, Israeli point guard Gal Mekel was released by the Dallas Mavericks, effectively making him a free agent. While both Oklahoma City and Indiana expressed interest, it seemed that Mekel was definitely joining forces with the latter, who are in dire need of a point guard right now, without the injured Rodney Stuckey (foot), George Hill (knee) and C.J. Watson (foot).

Paul George is also injured, after suffering a possible season-ending leg fracture back in August.

The 26-year-old Israeli flew into Boston at Indiana's expense Wednesday, as the team was readying to sign him, but now, a procedural delay in securing him a new visa may deny him becoming a member of the team.

The Pacers may have to sign a different player in his stead.

As per ESPN's Marc Stein:


The Pacers are currently 1 - 4 and are obviously desperate for new life to join their roster.

Mekel received $1.76 million after playing two seasons with Dallas, playing only 31 games last year, and averaging 2.4 points and 2.0 assists.

Omri Casspi, the first Israeli to play in the NBA, has been having a phenomenal year with the Sacramento Kings, pouring in eleven points and six rebounds in just 21 minutes in the team's home victory against the Nuggets. He's been averaging 8 points, 3.8 rebounds with the Kings.

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