Keith Langford

International Notes: Huertas, Hamilton, Langford

Veteran guard Marcelo Huertas, who appeared in 76 games for the Lakers over the last two seasons, appears to be headed back overseas. According to international basketball journalist David Pick (Twitter link), Huertas is joining Spanish team Unicaja Malaga, this year’s EuroCup winners.

Huertas averaged 16.4 MPG in 53 contests during his first year in L.A., but saw his role reduced in 2016/17, playing in just 23 games before he was traded to Houston. The Rockets immediately waived Huertas, giving him the opportunity to return to Europe.

Here are a few more updates on international transactions with NBA connections:

  • Having been traded by the Nets and waived by the Raptors already this month, center Justin Hamilton appears poised to land in China. Eurohoops passes along a report from Sport 24 that suggests Hamilton is on the verge of signing a lucrative contract with the Beijing Ducks.
  • Another notable player is making the move to China, according to David Pick, who reports (via Twitter) that Euroleague scoring leader Keith Langford has agreed to a $2.1MM deal with the Shenzhen Leopards. Langford, 33, has had a long and successful career overseas, appearing only briefly in the NBA with the Spurs in 2007/08.
  • Veteran forward Cory Jefferson has signed in Italy with EA7 Milano, a source tells David Pick (Twitter link). It’ll be the first stint in Europe for Jefferson, who played for the Nets and Suns between 2014 and 2016 and was in camp with the Cavaliers last year.

And-Ones: Stackhouse, Porter Jr., EuroHoops

Sam Fortier of The Ringer detailed Jerry Stackhouse‘s decision to coach in the D-League as opposed to working as an NBA assistant coach. Stackhouse, coaching Raptors 905, often works in front of small crowds with little fanfare, but the two-time All-Star doesn’t mind.

“Until I got this job this year, I hardly even knew the D-League existed,” Stackhouse said. “I’m a pro. I’m an NBA guy, and I’m not wasting time, you know? I get it when people don’t understand the D-League. It’s part of it. But I’m here to tell ’em it’s a gem. A hidden gem.”

Stackhouse explained the frustration of watching Jason Kidd and Derek Fisher seamlessly transition from their playing career to a head coaching job. After a stint as a TV analyst covering the Pistons, Stackhouse pursued a coaching job with the 37-11 Raptors 905.

“Seeing [Fisher and Kidd] get those head-coaching jobs, I was like, I know I’m — you hate to say better — but I know I’m damn as good as those guys when it comes to coaching,” Stackhouse said. “I wouldn’t have been ready [to be a head coach] in 2012–13, but Jason Kidd came in and my mind was like, ‘I have more of a pulse of this team than he could ever have. They respect me.’ I look at all of the other relationships you have to have to make it work, and the people you need to know in organizations. … It’s hard to get that.”

More from around the game…

  • Green Bay’s Kerem Kanter will test the NBA draft process, Jon Rothstein of CBS Sports reports (Twitter link). Per Rothstein, Kerem (brother of Enes Kanter), will graduate and transfer if he doesn’t remain in the draft.
  • Michael Porter Jr., the nation’s top recruit, announced on Twitter that he has committed to Missouri (link). When speaking to Jeff Goodman of ESPN, Porter said “It wasn’t an easy decision at all, but I’m very comfortable with the program and Coach Martin. I trust my dad. I think we have a chance to do something special. … I’m excited beyond words.”
  • International basketball reporter David Pick was asked who the best player in Europe was (Twitter link). Pick replied “Milos [Teodosic] is a magician, but most Euroleague GMs love Nando De Colo. Sergio Llull is a stud, Keith Langford voted best US-born overseas.” De Colo, who has played with CSKA Moscow since 2014, appeared in 119 NBA games with the Spurs and Raptors between 2012-14. In a recent interview with, de Colo said returning to the NBA is “not a priority” at the moment.