Jeremy Lin

International Notes: Lin, Germany, Turkey, Powell

Jeremy Lin posted a message to fans on Instagram as he returned to China for the resumption of the CBA season, relays Dario Skerletic of Sportando. Overseas players have come back to the nation and are undergoing a two-week quarantine before play resumes in the Chinese Basketball Association.

“Safely landed back in Beijing to finish out the CBA season,” Lin wrote. “Excited to hoop again, but leaving the bay worried and with a heavy heart for the sick, the jobless and all those fighting fear, anxiety and stress over the unknown future. Shoutout to our medical staff in the 50 states for working tirelessly and everyone keep doing your part in slowing the virus!

“It’s been an awesome 2 months camped out in the gym…basketball has never been more meaningful. The world needs basketball now more than ever. I still remember when I went through my toughest moments and worst injuries, you guys were there for me. I hope to return the favor. As all you beloved fans told me the day after my knee injury, keep fighting bc we’re #NeverDone.”

There’s more international news this morning:

  • Brose Bamberg in Germany is the latest team to permit its American players to return home, according to Nicola Lupo of Sportando. Former NBA guard Jordan Crawford is the most recognizable name on the roster.
  • All players from the Fenerbahce team in Turkey, along with coaches and staff members, have been tested for the coronavirus and a team manager in under observation in the hospital, writes Ennio Terrasi Borghesan of Sportando. The roster includes former NBA players James Nunnally, Nando De Colo, Derrick Williams, Malcolm Thomas, Jan Vesely, Luigi Datome and Joffrey Lauvergne.
  • New Iona coach Rick Pitino, who had been coaching Panathinaikos in Greece since 2018 before recently leaving the team, tells Lupo that Seton Hall’s Myles Powell could have a bright future in the EuroLeague. He compares Powell to former Suns and Pelicans guard Mike James, who has become a star in Europe. “Myles Powell reminds me of Mike a little bit,” Pitino said. “Do I think he’ll be in the NBA? I think he’ll try out with a team, but I think he’ll be a terrific player over in Europe and make a lot of money and be very successful. Could he play in the NBA? I’m sure he could, but I don’t think he’s somebody you’re gonna say he’s definitely gonna make it, but he’s a very talented young man and I think he’ll get a good shot at the NBA.”

International Notes: Australia, China, Turkey, EuroLeague

After canceling the remainder of their best-of-five Grand Final series earlier this week due to the coronavirus pandemic, Australia’s National Basketball League announced today that the Perth Wildcats have been crowned champions for 2019/20. Perth was leading the Sydney Kings 2-1 in the series when it was canceled.

In a statement, NBL owner and executive chairman Larry Kestelman and commissioner Jeremy Loeliger explained the decision and announced that former standout Providence guard Bryce Cotton has been named the Grand Final MVP.

The NBL’s press releases this week have made it clear that the league’s decision to cancel the rest of the Grand Final series was made in large part because the Kings expressed they weren’t comfortable with continuing to play those games. Bogut, who said Sydney’s decision was made after “almost three hours of back and forth (and plenty of tears),” registered his displeasure with the way the NBL handled things.

“I want to go on record to say I am beyond embarrassed and disappointed in regards to how this was handled by our league from the week leading up to the Grand Final series. More to come at a later date re: that,” Bogut wrote in a Twitter note.This has nothing to do with the result announced today and I wish to congratulate the Perth Wildcats on being crowned Champions.”

Here’s more international news from basketball leagues around the world:

  • Jeremy Lin, Ekpe Udoh, and Antonio Blakeney are among the players who have now returned to China and will begin a two-week quarantine before returning to their respective CBA teams, per Emiliano Carchia of Sportando (Twitter links).
  • The Turkish government has made the decision to suspend all sports in the country, including basketball, Carchia writes in a story at Sportando. Players in Turkey expressed dismay last week that games were continuing amid the coronavirus outbreak, as we noted at the time.
  • The EuroLeague issued an update on the postponement of its season, addressing whether or not players are allowed to leave their respective cities, what will happen with this year’s EuroLeague Final Four, and much more. Carchia has the full memo at Sportando.

International Notes: China, Russia, Poland, Japan

Earlier this week, a report indicated that Chinese Basketball Association teams collectively decided that foreign players who are under contract in the CBA and refuse to return to China will be banned from the league for three years.

With that being said, it seems as if several foreign players are heeding this warning and heading back, per Emiliano Carchia of Sportando

Some of the notable returning players are Jared Cunningham, Donatas Motiejunas, MarShon Brooks, Ty Lawson, and Jeremy Lin. Those players and others will quarantine for 14 days and get tested for COVID-19 upon returning to China.

The CBA’s season is set to resume play on April 15 with games reportedly taking place in Qingdao and Dongguan.

Here’s more on the international circuit:

Jeremy Lin Signs With Beijing Ducks

One of the top remaining NBA free agents will be heading to China for the 2019/20 season, as point guard Jeremy Lin confirmed today that he’s joining the Beijing Ducks of the Chinese Basketball Association (Twitter link). Emiliano Carchia of Sportando reported this morning that Lin had agreed to terms with Beijing and later tweeted that the signing was official.

Lin, who turned 31 last Friday, has spent the last nine seasons in the NBA, most notably emerging for the 2011/12 Knicks with an out-of-nowhere run dubbed as “Linsanity.”

Lin won his first championship this spring after joining the Raptors in February, though he struggled to match his usual production in a backup role in Toronto, recording 7.0 PPG and 2.2 APG in 23 regular season games (18.8 MPG) and playing sparingly in the postseason. Those averages were his worst since his rookie year and his .374 FG% would have been a career low.

His struggles with the Raptors likely limited the NBA market this summer for Lin, who expressed frustration in July about how his free agency was playing out, suggesting that he felt like “the NBA has kind of given up on me.”

Although he’ll leave the NBA for now, a strong showing in the Chinese Basketball Association could create a path for Lin’s eventual return stateside. CBA teams have been pursuing the veteran guard for much of the offseason, as his Taiwanese roots have made him a popular player overseas. We first heard earlier this month that Lin was in advanced talks with Beijing.

Former Jazz center Ekpe Udoh also signed with the Beijing Ducks this offseason.

International Notes: Lin, Todorovic, Withey, Phillip

Former Raptors guard Jeremy Lin is in advanced talks with the Beijing Ducks of the Chinese Basketball Association, relays Emiliano Carchia of Sportando. The news was first reported by journalist Sonx Xiang of China.

We passed along a story earlier this week that several CBA teams were interested in adding Lin if he didn’t receive an invitation to an NBA training camp. He admitted that playing in China is an option he’s considering.

Lin, who will turn 31 on Friday, won his first championship ring after coming to Toronto in February. He was part of the rotation during the regular season, averaging 7.0 points and 18.8 minutes per night. However, his role was greatly reduced in the postseason, as he appeared in just eight games and averaged 3.4 minutes. He has played for eight teams in a nine-year NBA career.

There’s more international news this morning:

  • Marko Todorovic, who had his draft rights renounced by the Rockets earlier this month, has reached an agreement with the Tianjin Pioneers of the CBA, Carchia writes in a separate story. The 27-year-old center played in Spain last season for Joventut Badalona. The Trail Blazers selected him with the 45th pick in the 2013 draft and traded his rights to Houston.
  • Former NBA center Jeff Withey will play in Israel this season for Ironi Nes-Ziona, Carchia adds in another piece. Withey spent time in Turkey and Greece last year. He played for three teams during his five years in the NBA, most recently for the Mavericks in 2017/18.
  • Tarik Phillip, who was waived by the Wizards on Thursday, will play for Tofaş Spor Kulübü in Turkey, according to a tweet from the team. The 26-year-old guard signed with Washington at the end of the 2018/19 season, but didn’t see any game action. He spent most of the year with the Memphis Hustle in the G League, averaging 13.8 PPG, 4.9 RPG, and 3.8 APG in 48 games.

Jeremy Lin Drawing Interest From Chinese Teams

Jeremy Lin has yet to secure a new contract for the 2019/20 season, and he doesn’t appear to be closing the door on the idea of signing with a team in the Chinese Basketball Association, writes Jonathan White of The South China Morning Post. According to White, Lin said during a recent appearance in Guangzhou that he’s keeping his options open.

“Of course I am thinking about the CBA,” Lin said. “I don’t know where I will be next year, so I don’t have expectations. I know what level I can play at, so if I don’t get that I won’t settle.”

In a separate story for the Morning Post, White relays a report from basketball reporter Jia Lei, who wrote on Chinese outlet Sina Sports that multiple teams have contacted Lin’s camp to express interest in bringing him to China. It’s not clear which CBA clubs are eyeing the veteran point guard, but Jia suggests Lin is weighing the possibility of a move to China.

Lin, who will turn 31 later this month, struggled down the stretch last season for the Raptors, averaging just 7.0 PPG and 2.2 APG on .374/.200/.810 shooting in 23 games (18.8 MPG). Those marks all ranked among the worst of his NBA career, and he didn’t see much action in the playoffs.

Still, Lin posted solid numbers for the Hawks in 51 games in 2018/19 before being bought out, recording 10.7 PPG and 3.5 APG on .466/.333/.845 shooting.

For an NBA team seeking point guard depth, there aren’t a ton of reliable options out there, with Lin and Shaun Livingston representing the best veteran free agents still on the board. If Lin remains patient, it seems likely he’ll catch on with an NBA team, particularly once injuries start piling up in the fall. However, if he wants to secure a deal sooner rather than later, he could be tempted by a larger role and a guaranteed salary in China or Europe.

International Rumors: Lin, Stauskas, Vaughn, Colson, Acy

Although he recently expressed frustration about how his free agency has played out, veteran point guard Jeremy Lin doesn’t appear ready to give up on seeking an NBA deal for the 2019/20 season.

A source tells Emiliano Carchia of Sportando that talks between Lin and EuroLeague powerhouse CSKA Moscow have broken down, with the 30-year-old turning down the Russian club’s interest. Lin remains interested in playing in the NBA rather than heading to Europe, according to Carchia.

Another free agent NBA guard, Nik Stauskas, is also resisting a move to Europe, according to Lithuanian journalist Donatas Urbonas. Urbonas tweets that Stauskas has received offers from Russian and EuroLeague teams, but has rejected them. The former eighth overall pick finished the 2018/19 season with the Cavaliers, but is currently an unrestricted free agent.

Here are a few more notes and updates on players being courted by non-NBA teams from around the world:

  • Former first-round pick Rashad Vaughn is leaning toward accepting an offer made by Bosnian team Igokea, a source tells Carchia. The NBA journeyman, who played for Milwaukee, Brooklyn, and Orlando from 2015-18, spent the 2018/19 season in the G League.
  • Bonzie Colson‘s rumored deal with Turkish team Darussafaka is now official, agent Misko Raznatovic tweeted this morning. Colson finished the 2018/19 campaign on a two-way contract with the Bucks, but was recently waived by Milwaukee.
  • Israeli and EuroLeague club Maccabi Tel Aviv is eyeing NBA big man Quincy Acy, a source tells Carchia. Acy has logged 337 career NBA regular season appearances, but saw action in just 10 games in 2018/19 when he signed a pair of 10-day contracts with the Suns.

Atlantic Notes: Gasol, Lin, Poirier, Erman

Raptors center Marc Gasol is thankful that the Grizzlies didn’t agree to his request not to be traded, relays Alex Madrid of Eurohoops. Gasol had been with Memphis for more than a decade before the team committed to rebuilding and sent him to Toronto in a deadline deal. The move led to Gasol collecting his first NBA championship ring.

“There have been few players that haven’t been traded over the years in the NBA,” Gasol said. “If it had been dependent on me, I wouldn’t have been traded. I always thought I could reverse the situation there (in Memphis) and bring the team to the top. But, thank God, they ignored me.”

Gasol will be part of the remaining foundation as the Raptors try to stay in contention without Kawhi Leonard. The 34-year-old will earn $25.6MM this season in the final year of his contract.

There’s more from the Atlantic Division:

  • Jeremy Lin appears distraught about his free agency situation in a video tweeted by Daily Sports Dosage. “Free agency has been tough,” Lin says. “Because I feel like in some ways the NBA has kind of given up on me.” The Raptors signed Lin in February to provide backcourt depth, but he shot just 37% in 23 games and was barely used during the playoffs.
  • French center Vincent Poirier could have made more money in Europe, but he wanted the challenge of playing in the NBA, tweets Ben Rohrbach of Yahoo Sports. Poirier was the EuroLeague’s top rebounder last season, and the Celtics believe his athleticism will translate well.
  • Former Celtics assistant Darren Erman will become head coach of the organization’s G League affiliate in Maine, according to Jay King and Jared Weiss of The Athletic. Known as a defensive specialist, Erman has spent the past four seasons with the Pelicans.

And-Ones: Lin, James, Harrison, Williams

Point guard Jeremy Lin has received an offer from CSKA Moscow, according to Emiliano Carchia of Sportando. Lin is one of the biggest names remaining on the NBA free agent market but has received little interest following a disappointing stint with the champion Raptors. He was expected to be a rotation player in the playoffs after reaching a buyout with the Hawks but only appeared in eight postseason games during the title run, averaging 1.1 PPG in 3.4 MPG. Lin, 30, has appeared in 480 NBA games.

We have more international basketball news:

  • Olimpia Milano is looking to part ways with former NBA guard Mike James, Carchia tweets. The Euro team signed another former NBA point guard, Shelvin Mack, on Thursday to essentially replace James. Head coach Ettore Messina informed James there’s no playing time available with the addition of Mack. James played a combined 36 games with the Suns and Pelicans during the 2017/18 season.
  • Guard Aaron Harrison will remain in Turkey with Galatasaray, his agent told Carchia (Twitter link). Harrison, 24, last appeared in the NBA with the Mavericks, playing nine games during the 2017/18 season.
  • Former Suns and Nets forward Alan Williams will likely sign with Russia’s Lokomotiv Krasnodar, Lithuanian journalist Donatas Urbonas tweets. Williams, 26, played five games with Brooklyn last season.

Free Agent Stock Watch 2019: Eastern Conference

Every week, Hoops Rumors takes a closer look at players who will be free agents or could become free agents next offseason. We examine if their stock is rising or falling due to performance and other factors. With the playoffs underway, we turn our attention to the Eastern Conference:

Michael Carter-Williams, Magic, 27, PG (Up) – Signed to a one-year, $60K deal in 2019
Carter-Williams was scrounging for work six weeks ago after getting traded from Houston to Chicago in early January and then immediately getting waived. The former Rookie of the Year had to settle for 10-day contracts with Orlando before he was signed for the remainder of the season. Not only did he help the Magic reach the playoffs, he’s been one of their main cogs off the bench against Toronto. He posted 10 points, five rebounds and two assists in Orlando’s Game One upset. Carter-Williams has played well enough to receive offers commensurate to other veteran backup point guards.

Glenn Robinson III, Pistons, 25, SF (Down) – Signed to a two-year, $8.35MM deal in 2018
With Blake Griffin sidelined by a knee in the first two games against Milwaukee, Robinson got one last chance to convince the Pistons that they should exercise their $4.3MM option on him for next season. Robinson has been utilized as an undersized power forward in the series but his perimeter shooting woes have continued. After shooting just 29% from deep and falling out of Dwane Casey‘s rotation during the regular season, Robinson has made just one of his eight 3-point attempts in the first two games. Robinson will assuredly return to the free agent market this summer.

Pat Connaughton, Bucks, 26, SG (Up) — Signed to a two-year, $3.36MM deal in 2018
Connaughton’s modest salary of $1.723MM for next season becomes guaranteed if he’s still on the roster July 1st. That already seemed like a good bet heading into the postseason; now it’s a no-brainer. He’s taken advantage of an expanded role with Malcolm Brogdon and Tony Snell sidelined by injuries. Connaughton has been a difference-maker against Detroit, averaging 14.0 PPG on 73.4% shooting and 8.5 RPG in 29.5 MPG. He also recorded four blocks on perimeter shooters in Game Two. He’ll be one of the league’s best bargains next season.

Jeremy Lin, Raptors, 30, PG (Down) – Signed to a one-year, $487K deal in 2019
Lin chose the Raptors after agreeing to a buyout with the Hawks in mid-February. The expectation was that he would bolster the playoff rotation behind Kyle Lowry. But Lin has had trouble finding his footing in Toronto and with Fred VanVleet healthy, he has been the odd man out in the postseason. He never left the bench in the Game One loss to Orlando and played four meaningless minutes in Game Two. Lin should still find work this summer but he’ll likely have to settle for something close to the veteran’s minimum.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.