Amar’e Stoudemire is thinking about leaving the NBA after next season to instead play for the team he owns in Israel, reports Marc Berman of the New York Post. Stoudemire is part of a four-man group that holds a 60% stake in Hapoel Jerusalem.
“We’ll see,’’ Stoudemire said. “You can’t rule anything out. The future is unknown and so if I have an opportunity to [play in Israel] and am still in great health, it would be great. I have one more year left on my deal and we’ll go from there.’’
Stoudemire seemed more enthusiastic about the idea in other remarks, saying he’s “absolutely” considering the possibility and that there’s a “high chance” he’ll go through with it, observes Ian Begley of ESPNNewYork.com (Twitter links). He has an early termination option on his contract for 2014/15, but he’ll almost certainly opt in and collect the more than $23.4MM coming his way in the final season of his deal with the Knicks. Here’s more from the East:
- The Knicks apparently had interest in Lamar Odom even before Phil Jackson arrived, as coach Mike Woodson told reporters today that the 34-year-old’s name came up in the team’s conversations earlier this season, Berman notes via Twitter.
- Cavs owner Dan Gilbert is upset with his team’s performance, and a source tells Sam Amico of Fox Sports Ohio that Cleveland will make a significant trade this summer. That’s a sign that Gilbert is no fan of his roster, Amico concludes.
- People around the league indicate that the Pistons will likely hire someone from outside the organization to replace Joe Dumars, Amico writes in the same piece.
- Vincent Goodwill of The Detroit News lays out some of the issues that will confront the new head of basketball ops for the Pistons.