Former NBA big man and 2016 second-rounder Chinanu Onuaku has signed with Italian club Dinamo Sassari, team president Stefano Sardara announced (link via Aris Barkas of Eurohoops).
Onuaku worked out for several NBA teams – including Toronto, Boston, and Dallas – this offseason and also drew interest from EuroLeague clubs, according to Barkas. However, it seems that NBA and EuroLeague interest never translated into a concrete offer that appealed to the veteran center, who appeared in six regular season games for the Rockets between 2016-18.
According to Barkas, Onuaku also had an offer from Russian team Zenit St. Petersburg, but opted to head to Italy, where he and Dinamo Sassari will compete in Lega Basket Serie A and the Basketball Champions League.
Here are a few more odds and ends from around the basketball world:
- In a story for The Athletic, Mike Vorkunov explores what recent trades for players like Rudy Gobert and Dejounte Murray say about how teams value first-round picks and wonders if clubs are more willing to take big swings on All-Stars like Gobert and Murray in trades because fewer impact players are changing teams in free agency.
- Within the same story, Vorkunov notes that the NBA’s revenue increase in 2021/22 benefited the players, who typically have 10% of their pay checks placed in escrow and saw that percentage increase to 15% in 2020/21 due to COVID-19. League sources tell Vorkunov that players ended up having just 7.5% of their checks placed in escrow this past season.
- Sopan Deb of The New York Times takes a closer look at a camp run by John Lucas III, which is attended by players who have some interest in coaching once their playing days are over. Veteran NBA wings Rodney Hood and Justin Anderson, as well as three-time WNBA All-Star Marie Ferdinand-Harris, were among the players in attendance at this year’s camp in Orlando.
- Jonathan Givony of ESPN (Insider link) shared his takeaways from this year’s FIBA U17 World Cup, highlighting the emergence of 15-year-old Cooper Flagg. Flagg, a 6’8″ prospect from Maine, “made a strong case as the best prospect in high school basketball and a potential No. 1 pick candidate down the road,” Givony writes.