Tuesday, October 12th, 2010 at 5:51 pm  |  31 responses

Rafer Alston Headed To China

by Tzvi Twersky | @TTwersky

After leaving the Miami heat midway through last season due to family issues, it appears that the NBA door has closed for Rafer Alston.

An ocean away, another door, a much smaller door, has opened.

According to NiuBBall, a friend of SLAM who’s currently residing in China, two separate Chinese teams are interested in the 34-year-old’s services:

If you’ve been staying up with the blog, you’ve done known that Skip is coming to China to train with the Zhejiang Guangshua Lions, one of the many teams vying to acquire the 11-year NBA point-guard.  According to the Qingdao Evening Newspaper, he’s all set for Chinese lay-up lines in southern China on the 18th.

Alston in Zhejiang would presumably give them the inside track, but he that may not be the case after all.  The same article is reporting that Alston, despite agreeing to come to Zhejiang, personally reached out to Qingdao Double Star two weeks ago and the two sides have mutual interest in each other. If a deal is reached, Skip will sign an agreement with Double Star similar to Stephon Marbury’s with Shanxi Zhongyu that would include opportunities on the business side of the basketball in addition to an annual salary.

Revered in the Far East for his past streetball exploits, Rafer “Skip To My Lou” Alston hopes to add a few last highlights to his reel and dollars to his pocket before calling it a career.

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  • http://www.basketball247.co.uk Greg Tanner

    I think there should still be room for him in the NBA?

    Remember how well he did at Orlando a while back when Jameer Nelson was out?

  • The Philosopher

    At least he seems to be making a living.

  • Izindunduma

    Certain people are being flushed out the NBA.

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    He can definitely help out a lot of teams in the NBA.

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    Skip 2 My Lou is one of my favorite ball players ever, I may add.

  • http://theurbangriot.com The Nupe

    It’s hard to believe that his skills have diminished from a starter in the NBA to somebody not worthy of a contract. He did handle the situation really poorly, but if it was my sister, I’m not sure how I would have handled things either. I guess if AI and Steph don’t ‘deserve’ NBA jobs, then he doesn’t either. Maybe this tren of fringe talent with ‘character issues’ will be good for other players to pay attention to.

  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    How do you slap a dude in the back of the head in Chinese?

  • thegfunk

    Is this becoming a ny point tradition? God, steph and now skip?

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    Rafer still should be on an NBA Roster, If Anthony Johnson and Luke Ridnour still are on NBA rosters, then Rafer should at least be the third point guard on a NBA roster. BOOK IT!!

  • http://slamonline.com The Black Rick Kamla

    @thegfunk….honestly this is just a reflection of what has come of NY basketball….not much different than NY rap…

  • http://slamonline.com The Black Rick Kamla

    Man if he would’ve had his head on straight he could’ve been the starting PG on the Heat roster….that would’ve been an automatic ring the way I see it….

  • http://slamonline.com The Black Rick Kamla

    ^^^^^take back this comment, didn’t quite hear the entire story about his departure…just clicked the side link….sad stuff, hopefully his sister is fine and in good spirits now, and hopefully he can get back into the league when the time is right.

  • TSmoove

    Things went downhill for him when he helped lead the Magic to the NBA finals…then got traded to the worst team in the league and didnt even start…i can see himself asking how did i end up here about 50 times over that season

  • EJ

    Get AI to China too so China has the best handles in the world with Stephon, Shammgod, Skip and AI.

  • Benji

    Talking of China, check out the brawl between China and Brazil on youtube. Maybe SLAM will put the video up on the site?

  • Benji

    Talking of Chinese basketball, check out the brawl between China and Brazil on youtube. Maybe SLAM will put the video up on the site?

  • Benji

    It’s so good I had to tell you twice. Sorry about double post.


    Street ballers can make a really good living overseas.

  • CyldeSays

    I like Skip’s game, but he’s been on 9 teams in 11 years. There’s got to be something that keeps him getting bounced off of teams…

  • http://slamonline.com Yknot

    Hope all the young guns with “street ” rep are watching how the NBA does guys like that! Will this be Jennings’ future?

  • Dyce

    Chris Duhon just got a new contract.

  • Coney Islander

    I’m noticing a lot of the “Urban Legends” being forced out of the league. They are trying to remove the street image or “troubled” players before the game gets the full blown international attention the Stern is going after.

  • Jumper

    He’ll be “Skip to my Lui”

  • shu

    lol @ jumper… Will he wear the Li Nings or the And ones? I know bball is a global sport and all but is and1 big enough to be able to support someone in Asia? Skip is pretty much the reason and1 became so big, so I’m sure the loyalty runs deep both ways but he is 34 and in China..

  • Antonio

    @TSmoove – I don’t even understand how someone can help a team make it that far and not earn more time with the team. Even if he lost his starting spot to an up-and-comer, at least he’d still be in position to repeat success.

    @Coney Islander – Seems that way doesn’t it. However, when the NBA goes international, the guys they force out will be the competition since other countries are more than happy to have highly skilled American players. Wouldn’t it be a blow to American basketball to have [for example], a European team be the International champions because they have like three former NBA all-stars and a group of dedicated role players?

  • PapaBearATL

    It’s seems like if you don’t follow the Leagues status quo that means you have an attitude problem. Family First, that is the type of character I want around me! He showed the world that college isn’t the only avenue to the league. I think Orlando did him dirty and that would have opened my eyes as far as the priorities of organizations in the league. What happened with his sister isn’t something you might want to share with the world. Good luck Skip!

  • smooth

    show them how we do it here in America skip to my lou

  • smooth

    good luck man and do your thing wich is making teams better and players beter and get no credit

  • http://slamonline.com niQ

    Best of luck man. Definitely wished he could still play in the NBA though…

  • Towelie

    Till this day, I still don’t get it…how can you lead a team to the Finals and then get traded…did Alston f*ck someone’s wife on the Magics???

    Atleast keep him for backup PG sake!

    Just really sad.

    Also, explain to me why Lakers traded Ariza for Artest, then get Matt Barnes???

    So many unsolved mysteries.

  • Jer Dawg

    All these Chinese kids will have ball handling skills now. But no fundamentals and can’t hit basic layups anymore. Pick up games will run 30 minutes just for games up to 11 straight up.