Andrew Nembhard has just made history.
The 6-5 point guard, who was drafted 31st overall by the Pacers last month, has signed a four-year contract worth $8.6 million, league sources told IndyStar on Wednesday. ESPN Jonathan Givony broke the news.
Nembhard’s contract guarantees $6.4 million over the first three years, the most on record for a second-round college pick, according to Givony. ESPN’s Bobby Marks added that Nembhard received more guaranteed money than the 18-30 first-round picks.
Nembhard is the Pacers’ second draft pick to sign a deal, joining No. 6 pick Bennedict Mathurin. Kendall Brown, the 48th pick, is the only recruit who hasn’t been signed.
Report:Buddy Hield is main subject of Pacers, Lakers trade discussion
After:Tyrese Haliburton says Pacers’ pursuit of Deandre Ayton shows Indiana is “competitively aggressive.”
“The word that stands out for me is feel. (Nembhard) just had an incredible feel for the game,” Pacers coach Rick Carlisle said during the introductory draft picks press conference. “I love point guards. I’ve had the real privilege of working with some really good point guards. I mean, Jason Kidd, we won a championship (in Dallas) with Jason Kidd, we had JJ Barea in that Jason Terry was a playmaker who turned goalkeeper “I see some of those qualities in Andrew. I love his size, I love playmakers who can control the game, not just with their skills but with their minds.”
Nembhard played four years in college, two in Florida and two in Gonzaga. The 22-year-old commanded the Zags offense with career highs of 11.8 points and 5.8 assists while posting a career-high 38.3 percent on 3 in the 2021-22 season.
He followed that up with an average of 6.6 points and a team-high 5.0 assists in the Pacers’ five Summer League games in Las Vegas.
“In recent years, I have been very lucky to win a lot of games and to be part of a team that has a great culture and knows how to come to work every day and improve,” Nembhard said during its intro. press conference. “I think I can just be another piece of the puzzle here that can connect guys and be myself.”