Zalgiris Kaunas took care of both the present and future of its center position on Friday by renewing veteran Antas Kavaliauskas while calling back youngster Laurynas Birutis from a year away on loan. Kavaliauskas (2.08 meters, 33 years old), who signed for one more season, came off the bench for almost all of his 35 appearances this season in helping Zalgiris reach its first Final Four this century. He averaged 5.7 points and 2.6 rebounds in 13 minutes per game in what was his second season with the club. Kavaliauskas had previously played professionally with Panionios of Greece, Riga of Latvia, Bilbao of Spain and Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius of his native Lithuania.
Birutis (2.13 meters, 20 years old) came up in the Zalgiris system but made his first-division debut with Vytautas Prienai-Birstonas in the 2017 Lithuanian League playoffs. Last season, he was loaned to his hometown club, BC Siauliai, and won the Lithuanian League's most valuable player award after averaging 14.9 points, 7.3 rebounds and 1.3 blocks. His efforts lifted Siauliai to a fifth-place finish and a 16-20 record.