Hawks second-round center Alpha Kaba will spend the 2017/18 in France, having signed a three-year deal with ASVEL of the French Pro A League, writes Chris Vivlamore of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Kaba’s agent confirmed the contract agreement.
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Kaba, 21, spent the last two seasons in Serbia playing for Mega Leks, and was the 60th overall pick in last month’s draft — Atlanta made him 2017’s “Mr. Irrelevant,” the last player drafted. New Hawks GM Travis Schlenk indicated earlier this month that he expected Kaba to return to Mega Leks or to play with another team overseas, so the big man’s deal with ASVEL doesn’t come as a surprise.
Spurs guard Tony Parker serves as president of ASVEL, and issued a statement announcing the team’s new deal with Kaba, as Vivlamore details. Parker’s translated statement reads as follows:
“It is a great satisfaction to have been able to sign Alpha, a young but already productive and promising interior that is part of a long-term project with us. The fact that he signed three years is a continuation of our desire to retain the players and to have a real identity to which our public and our partners can join. Alpha will be the last rookie of our offseason and will complete an ambitious and competitive workforce on our two major objectives: the French championship and the EuroCup.”
It’s not clear whether Kaba’s three-year deal includes NBA outs, but the Hawks don’t appear to be in any rush to bring the youngster stateside. Atlanta will retain his NBA rights going forward.