Orien Greene's FIBA Issues Are Back After Leaving NBA D-League To Play In China

Orien Greene's future is a bit murky right now. Photo: Otto Kitsinger/Getty Images/NBAE

Updating again with new information from the league office

None of the NBA affiliated leagues are subject to the disciplinary rulings of FIBA, though they do have a process in place for honoring each other's contracts (i.e. If Orien Greene had been under contract with a team overseas, he wouldn't have been able to play for the Flash).

I sincerely apologize for the misinformation published earlier today.

Updating this post to relay information received from a source within the D-League:

At least two D-League teams have filed a formal complaint to the D-League arguing that Greene should not be allowed to re-join the Utah Flash. The league's executive committee -- made up of various team's front office personnel -- is also filing a complaint as well with the league.

The reason for the complaints, I'm told, are that since the D-League is FIBA-sanctioned, Greene should not be allowed to play if he's been ruled ineligible to play elsewhere. The complaints also brought up an issue that questioning the D-League front office as it has apparently bent the rules for the Utah Flash and Greene after not being willing to do so for other teams in the league.

Essentially, this is going to get messy.

My personal take is that Greene should not be allowed to play in the D-League again this season, if only just because it would set an unnecessary precedent that no doubt could cause issues in the future.

Last summer, former unnecessary Flash guard Orien Greene was suspended from playing in any FIBA-governed league for a period of two years -- retroactive to March 12, 2009 -- for trying to use a teammate's urine for a drug test while playing professionally in the Netherlands. That suspension was somehow be swept under the rug prior this season, however, as Greene was allowed to play for both the Flash as well as the New Jersey Nets despite the NBA and D-League both operating within the FIBA guidelines.

When Greene decided to sign with China last week, after his FIBA suspension was complete, FIBA apparently re-remembered that Greene shouldn't have been allowed to play in the NBA or the D-League and extended his suspension so that he's now ineligible to play for Beijing in the CBA playoffs (I say "re-remembered" because FIBA would have had to sign off on Greene signing with the D-League).

Jon Pastuszek, writer at NiuBBall and the best English-language authority on Chinese basketball that I'm aware of, had more on Greene's situation that I've included after the jump.


Greene will be able to appeal, but really there's no point: The paperwork, processing and ruling will all take weeks and even if FIBA's decision is reversed, it will likely come until after the playoffs are over. Greene is now back in the United States.

But, talking with a source with knowledge of the situation, FIBA's decision to prolong Greene's suspension comes under questionable circumstances. If Greene isn't allowed to play in the CBA which is a professional league registered under FIBA, then why was signed off to play in the D-League and the NBA, which are also registered FIBA leagues? What at least on the surface seems like a major inconsistency in FIBA's logic has seemingly cost Greene a job.

"Somebody messed up," the source said.

The initial plan was for Greene to rejoin the Flash after his tour of duty in China was complete, but that seems rather unlikely unless FIBA is operating under some sort of extreme double standard and, as Pastuszek noted above, any sort of appeal would likely not be completed until the D-League playoffs are underway.

If only Greene would have been jobless in New York with a passport, he'd probably be with the New Jersey Nets right and not have to worry about this problem in the first place. 

Greene is basically the bizarro Sundiata Gaines.

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