Rashad McCants Leaves NBA D-League's Texas Legends for China
McCants, the 14th overall pick in the 2005 NBA Draft, had earlier turned down lucrative European offers to pursue another shot at the NBA, telling FanHouse last month "I think that playing in the D-League is the quickest option to return to the NBA."
Apparently, though, McCants decided that after averaging fewer than 20 minutes per game in his first three D-League games for the Dallas Mavericks-affiliated Texas Legends, the NBA was further away than planned, prompting him to take the overseas opportunity.
McCants' agent, E. Lindsey Maxwell, confirmed in an e-mail to FanHouse that his client is leaving the D-League.
"As always, as an agent, it is my job to communicate to him offers for his services (as) a professional athlete," Maxwell wrote. "Yesterday morning, through one of our overseas contacts, we were contacted by a Chinese team with a fair monetary offer for Mr. McCants to come and play for them."
McCants did elect to give the Mavericks, whose general manager Donnie Nelson is also co-owner of the Legends, an opportunity to match the offer.
"This offer was promptly communicated to my client and he immediately asked me to contact the Mavericks organization to explain the situation and to give them the opportunity to match it, offer him a roster spot or some assurances of a roster spot in Dallas," Maxwell continued. "After some discussions between myself, Donnie Nelson and (Legends President of Basketball Operations) Spud Webb, my client decided that he should explore his options in China. That process is ongoing and we hope to have that deal finalized later today."
This sort of deal isn't uncommon in the D-League as a similar situation occurred last season between Will Conroy, the Rio Grande Valley Vipers and the Houston Rockets. That ended differently, however, as the Rockets agreed to call up Conroy once 10-day contract options were available.
It is a bit surprising that McCants has elected to buy out his D-League contract, which will cost him $30,000, after originally announcing that he'd be donating his D-League earnings ($25,500 for the season) to charity. The relationship between he and the Mavericks, however, have seemed rocky since they originally brought him into training camp to make sure the Legends would obtain McCants' D-League rights.
"We are disappointed that it didn't work out with them and we look forward to Rashad getting a REAL shot at making it back into the NBA," Maxwell wrote in a e-mail to FanHouse prior to joining the Legends. "If he decides to go to the D-League, he will have to play for that team. I can't speak as to Dallas' motives, but (McCants) did not get much of a chance to 'compete for a roster spot' as Dallas had announced a couple of days ago."
McCants averaged 12.3 points for the Legends, shooting 59 percent from the field.