Out of nowhere, Tracy McGrady came back into our lives late last season as free agency pickup by the San Antonio Spurs, barely using him in the playoffs. McGrady got to win a playoff series for the first time in his career, reaching the NBA finals, mostly as a spectator, and without doing enough to find himself a team to carry on his NBA career.
Which might lead McGrady back to China, where he played last season for the Qingdao Eagles, averaging 25 points, 7.2 rebounds and 5.1 assists. It seems that the financial opportunities presented to him there, not to mention the lack of interest from NBA teams or McGrady not feeling he’s at a stage in which he should do auditions for teams, might mean he’s heading back to the CBA.
For those who have played years in NBA and still want to prolong their career like me, CBA is a great alternative. China is a huge market. Last season when I played for Qingtao Doublestar, the fans were incredible. I had a great time there.
McGrady played six games, averaging 5.2 minutes a night for the Spurs, always in garbage time. He failed to score a single point, not attempting to do anything but shoot three pointers or long range twos.
From around 2000-2008 McGrady was one of the best players in the NBA, playing as either a small forward or a shooting guard, leading the league in scoring two consecutive seasons during his last two years with the Orlando Magic. He made the playoffs three times with Yao Ming and the Houston Rockets, but it seemed like one of them was always injured at some point, preventing the team from tapping their potential to the fullest.
Due to his playing time with Ming, McGrady is immensely popular in China. He made $1 million last season from the basketball team, but the opportunity to make much more from sponsors and endorsement makes it more enticing to sign there than for the veteran’s minimum of around $1.3 million, although there hasn’t been a single team showing interest in adding him to their roster.