Friday, July 25, 2008

To Europe . . .

Josh Childress has sent shock waves through the NBA this last week by defecating on the "NBA Dream" and heading to Greece. This story has no immediate effect on the Jazz, but just wait . . . I have a feeling that this trend will grow. Already this Summer, the NBA has lost Juan Carlos Navarro, Tiago Splitter, Bostjan Nachbar, Carlos Delfino, Primoz Brezec, and Loren Woods. They all said no thanks to the NBA because they got better money from a team overseas. But the truly interesting thing about Childress is that i) he is not European, ii) he has no European connection, and iii) he easily could have stayed in the NBA. But he is hopping the Atlantic anyway.
The Bottom Line: the euro is currently destroying the dollar, and the European leagues (especially Greece & Spain) have had huge injections of capital and can now afford to pay players more than the NBA. Remember this guy?
Most of us assume that Raul's NBA career with the Jazz was a bust, but what we fail to realize is that he is making BANK with Real Madrid, more than the Jazz ever paid him (he never even made $1 million a year in SLC).
For the first time in NBA history, the NBA Draft was riddled with commentary about European players drafted by NBA teams that would subsequently stay home because the money is better is Spain and Greece.
Players turning down offers to play in the greatest basketball league in history? Players turning their backs on the NBA and all its money? Really? Keep your head on a swivel, because we'll be hearing this a lot more.


Orlando said...

It will be interesting to see if Childress is an anomaly (ala Danny Ferry) or the start of a new trend.

The thing not being mentioned much about Childress is that the Hawks offered him damn near the same money that he's getting from Olympiakos. He just wanted out of Atlanta. I'm not sure that many other American players will turn down equivalent money to go overseas.

But having said that, I think we'll see a lot more Euros head home. Kirilenko is almost guaranteed to sign with CSKA Moscow when he's done. Hell, he threatened to do that last summer. Also, what about Okur? He can opt out next summer. Does he want to raise his kids in Salt Lake or Ankara?

Pasty Gangsta said...

The strong Euro definitely doesn't hurt though. If you figure most average NBA players have 8-10 years to earn good money, I'd much rather take three or four of those in euros right now. My guess is you'll see more and more of this as the European leagues get better and if the Euro stays strong. But I also imagine that as with soccer on the Continent, the majority of the talent will stay in the place where the league is strongest and most popular (i.e. the States).

We live in a global world, gents. I don't mind the Euros having a couple of good hoops players. . . but only if they keep their damn soccer games off my television in the future.