Daniel Orton To Play In China

9:45pm: Orton has signed with Shanxi Zhongyu of the Chinese Basketball Association, Shams Charania of RealGM notes (Twitter link).

3:20pm: Daniel Orton will sign with a Chinese team after the Wizards released him earlier today, reports J. Michael of CSNWashington (on Twitter). The 24-year-old asked the Wizards to release him so that he would be free to head overseas, Michael also hears (Twitter link). It’s unclear which Chinese team he’s set to join. The deal isn’t yet official and can’t be until he clears NBA waivers Saturday, but Orton is traveling to China this weekend, Michael adds.

It’ll be the first overseas venture for the Ara Vartanian client, who’s spent his pro career in the NBA and the D-League since the Magic made him the 29th overall pick in 2010. The 6’10” center failed to find his footing in the NBA, though his six career starts in the league are more than he made in his lone season at the University of Kentucky, where he backed up DeMarcus Cousins.

The length of the arrangement isn’t clear, but most NBA veterans who head to China do so on one-year deals that allow them to hit the market again during the stretch run of the NBA’s regular season, when the Chinese season is already over. That’s also the time of year when NBA teams can sign players to 10-day contracts, which might prove to be Orton’s path back to the Association.

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