And-Ones: Yabusele, All-Stars, Shannon, Awards

Former NBA first-round pick Guerschon Yabusele, currently a member of Real Madrid, likely won’t be looking to return stateside anytime in the near future, he said in an interview with French outlet L’Equipe.

“I would like to return to the NBA, but I play for the best team in Europe and win championships,” Yabusele said (hat tip to Eurohoops). “Why would I leave that to sit on a bench? I will join the French National Team after the end of the season this summer, so I am waiting for the Olympics, not the NBA.”

The 16th overall pick in the 2016 draft, Yabusele joined the Celtics in 2017 and spent two seasons in Boston, appearing in 74 total games and seeing limited action. He averaged 2.3 points and 1.4 rebounds in 6.6 minutes per contest.

The 6’8″ forward, who is now 28, has had more success since returning to Europe in 2020. Yabusele won a French League (LNB Pro A) title with ASVEL in 2021, a Spanish League (Liga ACB) title with Real Madrid in 2022, and a EuroLeague championship in 2023 while playing a key role for his teams.

Here are a few more odds and ends from around the basketball world:

  • Zach Harper of The Athletic previews what this year’s All-Star rosters might look like and considers which players could be left on the outside looking in. The Western Conference backcourt will be especially competitive, according to Harper, who suggests that star guards like Devin Booker and De’Aaron Fox aren’t locks to be All-Stars.
  • A federal judge reinstated Illinois wing Terrence Shannon Jr. on Friday, ending his suspension and ruling that the university had violated his civil rights by depriving him of “protected property interests” without due process, according to John O’Connor of The Associated Press. Shannon, who had been considered a probable first-round pick in the 2024 draft, was suspended indefinitely by Illinois after being accused of rape last month.
  • Dan Devine of The Ringer picks his award winners for the first half of the 2023/24 season, including narrowly choosing Sixers star Joel Embiid over Nuggets star Nikola Jokic as the MVP so far.
  • John Hollinger of The Athletic poses a few questions for the Pacers and Raptors in the wake of their Pascal Siakam blockbuster, including what Siakam’s next contract will look like and whether Toronto will look to tank in the second half in an effort to hang onto its top-six protected first-round pick for 2024.
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