Bonzi Wells signs in China
December 15th, 2008
If things had worked out slightly different, Bonzi Wells would be earning about $8 million this year from the Sacramento Kings.
As it is, he’ll be earning about $40,000 in China.
Bonzi, pictured here playing an invisible trumpet, famously was reported to have turned down a five-year, $38.5 million extension from the Kings on the advice of his agent, Williams Phillips. Phillips seemingly thought that Bonzi could get more money from elsewhere. He was wrong, though. He was very wrong, in fact, as Bonzi ended up getting only a 2 year, $5 millionish contract from the Houston Rockets, which expired this summer.
Unable to get a contract from an NBA team this summer – which makes little sense, given that Bonzi’s a talented player, and only a year and a bit removed from being a key bench player on a 50-win team), Wells has now resorted to signing in China, for the Scrabbletastic Shanxi Zhongyu. Wells is expected to replace former Hawks swingman Donta Smith, as Chinese Basketball Association rules allow only two non-Asians per team. This seems a bit unfair on Smith, who is averaging 19.6 points, 6.0 rebounds, 4.9 assists and 2.5 steals on the season, but the other non-Asian spot on the Shanxi roster is taken up by Olumide Oyedeji. And Olumide Oyedeji is one of the best players in China, bizarrely, averaging 23.2 points, 17.9 rebounds, 3.5 assists, 2.9 steals and 1.7 blocks.
No, I can’t quite believe it either.
I am continuously intrigued by the esoterica and minutiae of all the aspects of building a basketball team. I want to understand how to build the best basketball teams possible. No, I don’t know why, either.
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