John Lucas III Spurns Lakers To Play In China

FRIDAY, 7:49am: Lucas is joining the Fujian Sturgeons, the team that signed Al Harrington this past summer, Stein reports (Twitter link).

WEDNESDAY, 8:40am: Seven-year NBA veteran John Lucas III has called off a scheduled workout with the Lakers this week to sign with a Chinese team instead, tweets Marc Stein of ESPN.com. Sportando’s Enea Trapani first reported that Lucas was finalizing a deal in China, and while the identity of the club isn’t entirely clear, Trapani suggests that it’s the Yao Ming-owned Shanghai Sharks, who just let go of Delonte West. The financial terms of the Chinese pact for Lucas are unclear, but it likely involves guaranteed money of the sort that the Lakers would be hesitant to offer.

Lucas turned down offers from Chinese Basketball Association teams Jilin Northeast and Fujian, as agent Bernie Lee told Shams Charania of RealGM earlier this month, shortly after the Wizards released him at the end of the NBA preseason. The Thunder, Pacers and Grizzlies were showing interest in the point guard, too, as Charania reported, adding that Lucas was looking for a longer-term arrangement than any Chinese or NBA teams were willing to provide. Lucas appeared to be targeting a return to the Bulls, for whom he played in 2010/11 and 2011/12, but it doesn’t look like there’ll be a reunion in the near future.

It’s been a whirlwind past few months for Lucas, who turns 32 on Thursday. The Jazz had him under contract for a non-guaranteed $1.6MM at the beginning of the offseason, but they traded him to the Cavs in July. Cleveland flipped him two months later to the Celtics, who promptly waived him. The Wizards picked him up in late October, presumably with an eye on keeping him for the start of the regular season, but Washington put him back on waivers before opening night.

Reports have indicated the Lakers are working out Quincy Miller, Tyrus Thomas and Dwight Buycks as they seek upgrades for their 2-9 squad. Bleacher Report’s Kevin Ding suggested this week that Xavier Henry would be the odd man out if Miller came aboard, though Henry has a guaranteed salary. Ronnie Price and Wayne Ellington have partially guaranteed deals. In any case, the Lakers would have to let someone go if they were to make a signing, since they already have a full 15-man roster.

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9 Comments on "John Lucas III Spurns Lakers To Play In China"

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Connector
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Connector
1 year 10 months ago

Any player that would rather play in China over the NBA, I wouldn’t want on my team. I don’t care what the money difference is.

nlruizjr
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nlruizjr
1 year 10 months ago

How do the Lakers have a full 15 man roster when 2 of the 15 are out for the season, it sounds like the Lakers will get penalized because of injuries, which are out of their control, I thought that was the reason for the disability exception ????

Josh
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Josh
1 year 10 months ago

It’s because those two are still eligible to play if their injuries heal faster than expected. I don’t think anyone will be waived…unless it’s Xavier who is complete dead weight. I think they are working guys out in case they pull off a trade that opens up a spot.

nlruizjr
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nlruizjr
1 year 10 months ago

true, JRandle may have an outside chance of returning but not realistic and Nash’s chances of returning are slim to none and plus the fact that he is burning bridges with the Lakers at this time more or less seals the fact that he won’t be back, also why have the disability exception if it has no meaning, the Lakers are giving up about 1.5 mil for this exception and it seems to me that, that should have some bearing for the NBA to consider, even if it means that those injured can’t return this season. IMO.

Josh
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Josh
1 year 10 months ago

The Lakers aren’t giving anything up. They’re allowed to spend $1.5 million if they choose to do so.

HoopsRumors
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HoopsRumors
1 year 10 months ago

Here’s more on the Disabled Player Exception, in case anyone’s curious …

link to hoopsrumors.com

The Lakers have a $1,498,680 Disabled Player Exception for Julius Randle and could receive another one close to $5MM for Nash.

–Chuck

nlruizjr
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nlruizjr
1 year 10 months ago

yes, the Lakers are giving up another body to acquire a body for someone that is more than likely not going to play for them this season, which will cost them 1.5 mil, so the Lakers are losing 2 for 1, IMO.

Josh
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Josh
1 year 10 months ago

They don’t have to sign anyone. They have not given anything up.

nlruizjr
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nlruizjr
1 year 10 months ago

Josh, I realize that, I’m saying that if they do decide to use the disability accept ion, that is what it will cost them, an extra body, so in essence they are losing 2 to get 1

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