Looks like Chinese Basketball Association (CBA) star Ding Yanyuhang may be heading to Dallas this summer.
Eddie Sefko of the Dallas Morning News has reported that Mavericks president Donnie Nelson told him they are interesting in bringing Ding to the United States so they can sign him to their summer league roster. Nelson said it's possible they may invite him to training camp as well.
Ding was the CBA's domestic most valuable player (MVP) this season and he was also the MVP of the CBA All-Star game. In 39 games with the Shandong Golden Stars this season, Ding averaged 23.2 points, 5.2 rebounds and 2.5 assists. He led the team to a 22–16 record, but they were knocked out in the first round of the playoffs.
"Ding has become one of China's best players and the Mavericks are hopeful he can grow into a solid NBA contributor. The fact that he fits in with the team's youth movement helps, too," Sefko stated in his report.
Ding is a solid player who may even make the final 15-man roster for the Mavericks, but Sefko said Nelson has mentioned that they may sign Ding to a two-way contract.
This is actually new in the National Basketball Association (NBA). Once the new collective bargaining agreement terms take effect on July 1, teams will get two extra roster spots designated as two-way contracts. Two-way contracted players do not count against the 15-man roster limit and they can move between the NBA and the NBA Development League.
Furthermore, the Mavericks can actually pull off a brilliant public relations move by signing Ding.
"Tapping into the huge Chinese market has been a focus of the NBA for several years. Signing a player born in China would be a tremendous boost for the Mavericks' global cache. And it would give them an entryway into a social media market that has exploded," Sefko said.