Veteran guard J.J. Barea has returned to his native Puerto Rico, having signed with Cangrejeros de Santurce, as our JD Shaw relays (via Twitter). The return of Barea, who previously played for the club in 2006, coincided with an announcement that the team is now co-owned by Puerto Rican music star Bad Bunny.
After being waived by the Mavericks in December, Barea spent most of the 2020/21 season with Estudiantes in Spain, having just left the club earlier this month. The 36-year-old was previously said to be determined to make it back to the NBA, but either those plans changed or there were no opportunities available. Instead, he’ll head back to Puerto Rico, where his professional career first begin in 2001.
Here are a few more odds and ends from around the basketball world:
- Candace Buckner of The Washington Post spoke to several NBA players about the unprecedented restrictions and regulations in place as a result of the coronavirus pandemic that made the 2020/21 season a lonely and taxing one.
- The NBA has halted its random tests for marijuana use since the 2019/20 season went on hiatus last March, but the 57 players who are candidates to represent Team USA in the Olympics will be subject to marijuana testing as of next Tuesday, writes Joe Vardon of The Athletic. According to Vardon, a league memo informing teams of the policy suggests that players who will represent other countries in the Olympics should check with team officials to see if they’ll be subject to the same tests.
- The Overtime Elite basketball league for top high school prospects will operate out of Atlanta beginning this September, the league announced today in a press release. According to the announcement, planning is underway to construct a new 103,000-square-foot facility where OTE’s players will train, study, and compete. We previously shared some details on the new program, which hired former NBA guard Kevin Ollie as its head coach.