As I wrote following the latest NBA lockout developments, the league's official minor league was probably going to be affected in a negative way. The first negative will be losing the Development League's best NBA prospect, apparently, as Alando Tucker has bought out of his D-League contract to take his talents to Spain.
Tucker has left the Dallas Mavericks-owned Texas Legends to sign with C.B. Gran Canaria, a historically-solid team in Spain's ACB, according to the Spanish team's official website. The former Phoenix Suns draft pick was slated to make $25,500 playing for an NBA call-up this season, but was instead forced to pay the $30,000 buyout on his D-League contract in order to move to Spain.
Without the NBA looking like it will return anytime soon, it makes sense that Tucker would jump overseas for a better money-making opportunity -- and makes me wonder how many more players might make the jump to Europe if a team comes calling.Tucker will join a Gran Canaria squad that competes in EuroCup competition and includes former NBA Summer League players Taurean Green, Marquez Haynes, Juan Palacios and Laurence Ekperegin. The team is just 2-5 in the tough Spanish league, but has won all three of its EuroCup games so far this season.
The Legends probably are not that happy with this move considering they traded Justin Dentmon to the Austin Toros in order to acquire the second overall pick in the D-League Draft so they could pick up Tucker. They should be able to convince a high-profile player to enter the league when they reach the top of the waiver wire, however, so it probably won't hurt for too long.
The Legends are hosting a four-team scrimmage Thursday and Friday that will also feature the Dakota Wizards, Rio Grande Valley Vipers, Tulsa 66ers and Austin Toros. The D-League's regular season tips off on Friday, Nov. 25.