Thursday, July 24, 2014
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NBA free agency rumors roundup: Tracy McGrady could return to China, J.R. Smith's contract has paid off

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His body is failing him but Tracy McGrady isn't ready to end his professional basketball career. The 34-year-old spent last season playing for Tsingtao Doublestar and grew an already-large following having previously played as Yao Ming's sidekick for the Houston Rockets.

After a stint with the San Antonio Spurs that ended with a trip to the NBA Finals, McGrady might be ready to return to the Chinese Basketball Association.

He told China.org.cn that he would consider heading back overseas but also is enjoying his family time following the playoff run with the Spurs.

But he didn't reveal much about the next stop of his career. "I am happy to be home with my wife and kids. But if possible, I may come back to CBA. I haven't really thought about that," said McGrady.

Pounding the Rock: More on the Spurs' offseason

Shortly before the postseason, McGrady crossed the Pacific to replace Stephen Jackson on San Antonio's roster. Jackson and Spurs coach Gregg Popovich saw a conflict in their own relationship because ofJackson's sparse playing time, and likewise, McGrady only made it on the court six times during the postseason. He failed to score in 31 minutes played but had eight rebounds and seven assists, often times acting as a facilitator in meaningless minutes.

But in a full season in China last year, McGrady averaged 25 points 7.2 rebounds and 5.1 assists per game for Doublestar, a sign he still has a lot of value in a growing overseas market.

Knicks doll out the dough to Smith

If the controversy about J.R. Smith's contract and knee injury weren't enough, don't worry Knicks fans. There's more.

According to the New York Daily News' Frank Isola, Smith has already been paid more than half of the value of his new contract. A source told Isola that Smith has already pocketed $8.974 million.

New York signed the reigning Sixth Man of the Year to a three-year, $17 million contract -- the third season is a player option -- and immediately saw the shooting guard undergo a knee surgery that will keep him out of action for up to four months.

That didn't bode well PR-wise for a franchise that also signed forward Amare Stoudemire to one of the NBA's biggest contracts a few years ago after the Phoenix Suns showed apprehension in giving the forward a similar deal because of his own knee problems.

Turkoglu wants to reach milestone

Hedo Turkoglu was suspended 20 games toward the end of the 2012-13 season after testing positive for performance-enhancing drugs. It's not as if it mattered to the struggling Orlando Magic squad, which was going to play its up-and-comers for developmental purposes anyhow.

It did matter for Turkoglu, who claimed the positive test for Methenolone was an innocent mistake. He wants to stay in the NBA, and as Orlando works on buying out the Turkish forward, Turkoglu has a goal.

As the NBA second-most tenured European player behind the Dallas Mavericks' Dirk Nowitzki, Turkoglu told Ajansspor.com that he'd like to reach the 1,000 game mark before heading back to his native country. Turkoglu has 103 games needed to reach his goal.

Grizzlies denied by Turkish point guard

The Memphis Grizzlies reportedly were spurned by Turkish point guard Milos Teodosic this offseason. Sportando.com reported that the Grizzlies offered Teodosic a contract this offseason, but the point guard wanted to remain in Europe.

Teodosic averaged 12.7 points and 4.9 assists in 30 Euroleague games for CSKA Moscow last season.

Memphis has been exploring its options regarding Mike Conley's backup. Jerryd Bayless clearly shined as more of an undersized shooting guard last season, and second-year pro Tony Wroten still has some growing up to do. The Grizzlies also picked up Dallas guard Josh Akognon off waivers, traded for the rights to Nick Calathes and are in the hunt for veteran point guard Mo Williams.

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This article originally appeared on SBNation.

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