The D-League has become known for hosting two different types of players: those up and coming prospects looking to get noticed, and some aging veterans who crave redemption.
Chris Douglas-Roberts would be quite the interesting exception. With three NBA seasons under his belt, Douglas-Roberts is someone who had already begun to establish the player he could be. As a part-time starter for both the Nets and Bucks, CDR displayed an ability to score in bunches and fill it up offensively. He was a 44% shooter from the field, averaging 7.7 points through 25.4 minutes per contest through his three big league campaigns.
But while NBA talents all over the globe sat home and waited for last season's lockout to come to an end, Douglas-Roberts opted to instead cash in and take his talents overseas. Instead of coming back to The Association immediately, the young guard stayed abroad the whole season.
Fast-forward to NBA training camp 2012, and the slasher was found in Los Angeles, looking to re-establish himself, all the while fighting for a spot with the Lakers. Though he played well sparingly, shooting 46% from the field in four contests, the team waived him anyway. While there was disappointment to be felt, even that didn't necessarily end Douglas-Roberts' tenure in L.A., as he could have caught on with the Lakers' D-League affiliate to start the season instead.
No, his release from the Lakers didn't end his tenure in Los Angeles---the Mavericks did. The fellow perennial signed CDR (along with fellow NBA veteran Melvin Ely) to a contract just this past Saturday. In a bit of a surprising move, however, Dallas subsequently waived both players the very next day. Some people may have been left wondering why.
Perhaps the Mavericks were curious about Douglas-Roberts enough to warrant scooping him up for their own D-League squad, the Texas Legends. By becoming the last team to sign him to a contract, Dallas now owns the guard's NBADL rights, should he choose to go that route to help secure another spot on an NBA roster.
The Legends have been kind to other well known NBA veterans in the past, and even welcomed the likes of Antonio Daniels, Alando Tucker, and Dan Gadruzic onto their roster just this past season. With all that Douglas-Roberts has to offer and prove, it would be a no-brainer to bring him aboard next month.
At just 25 years old, CDR has the same hunger and youthful athleticism that many of his fellow NBA hopefuls in the D-League share. That said, what he has in addition (something that gives him a leg up on the competition), is his experience. Douglas-Roberts put in the time before to already establish himself as a worthy role player, and perhaps even a spot-starter for an NBA teams. Out of the league for entire season, squads may simply need a reminder of that...a memory refresher of sorts.
The Mavericks may be set to assist the three-year vet use the D-League to help him provide them all with one. Hopefully, should he impress enough, having him in house will help Dallas pick up on it before anyone else does.