Belatedly, China Is Back In The NBA– But What Happens Now?

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Not since 2007 have Chinese players heard their names called in the NBA draft. History tends to forget that two mainlanders were drafted that year (Yi Jianlian to the Bucks and Sun Yue was also selected by the Lakers in the middle of the second round). Either way, by 2011, both players were out of the NBA and since then, there has been an awkward absence of Chinese players in the world’s biggest league. That was, until last Thursday, when Wang Zhelin and Zhou Qi both were selected.

Continue reading “Belatedly, China Is Back In The NBA– But What Happens Now?”

The Forgotten Man Of Chinese Hoops: Why Wang Zhelin’s Wasted Potential Can Still Be Redeemed

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Along with the emergence of Zhou Qi, a familiar habit has occurred within Chinese basketball; namely the complete shifting of media focus from one NBA hopeful to another. Four years ago, Fujian’s Wang Zhelin was the dashing young star destined to go to America but after a disappointing season in 2016 and still no play-off appearance on his four year old resume, the beefy power forward feels like yesterday’s news.  That said, NBA teams should not discount the draft eligible big man and Marco Catanzaro is here to explain why. Continue reading “The Forgotten Man Of Chinese Hoops: Why Wang Zhelin’s Wasted Potential Can Still Be Redeemed”

Breaking Down The 2015/16 CBA Season: Part 1

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In a change to last season’s preview (in part because nether myself, Marco nor Patrick can decide who is going to finish where in the 2015/16 standings), this season at Shark Fin Hoops, we’re going to breakdown all twenty teams in the league, profiling who we think is going to do what. This season is arguable the most unpredictable in years, with several legitimate title contenders and a number of sides that could surprise anyone on their day. So, in the first of four parts, here is the breakdown of the Bayi Rockets, Beijing Ducks, Chongqing Dragons, Dongguan/Shenzhen Leopards and Fujian Sturgeons.

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The CBA Week In Brief: Bayi, Stephon Marbury And The Undoubtable Talent Of Schoolboy Zhou

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Another round of games, another week of story lines. This time around its the struggles of a CBA legend, one of China’s oldest teams in turmoil, another mishandling a young star and China’s next great big man is emerging on the horizon in Xinjiang.

Continue reading “The CBA Week In Brief: Bayi, Stephon Marbury And The Undoubtable Talent Of Schoolboy Zhou”

Chris Tang And The Silent Winds Of Change In Chinese Basketball

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In his first game for UC Riverside (go Highlanders, etc) last week, Chris Tang, a Chinese point guard born in Nantong, would play five minutes, pick up a foul and an assists and that was pretty much it. For a player that was once being dubbed the mainland’s Jeremy Lin, this was not a great look. For Chinese basketball as a whole however, given a little of time, this might just work out.

Indeed, the very fact that another Chinese-born is now playing in high(ish) level college basketball in America can only be a good thing. The CBA- for all the chest puffing it has been exhibiting in recent weeks due to the ‘CBA20’ celebrations to commemorate the league’s twentieth anniversary- is still in desperate need of fresh ideas. Wang Zhelin is obviously seen as the next great Chinese NBA player but given the size of the country’s basketball playing population, the harsh reality is that the Fujian big man should not be China’s only viable candidate for the big time.

Continue reading “Chris Tang And The Silent Winds Of Change In Chinese Basketball”

Al Harrington Headed To Fujian- Unfortunately For Him

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Fujian Sturgeons, meet your thirty-four year stretch-forward. Fujian fans, say hello to another year of mediocrity. Very rarely does a signing of an overseas player omit such a feeling of ‘meh’ but this acquisition truly screams a front office with nothing more than the ambition to lose a lot of games.

So yes, poor Al Harrington is basically headed off to one of the laziest franchises in the CBA. He’ll spend a lot of time playing power forward, stretching the floor and giving young superstar Wang Zhelin the space to get busy in the paint. He’ll get 18/8/4 without too much hassle and maybe land a minimum deal to run with an NBA team once his deal runs out in 2015. Er, and that’s it, basically. Continue reading “Al Harrington Headed To Fujian- Unfortunately For Him”

Shanghai 117 – Fujian Sturgeons 113: Wafer and Jackson Guide Sharks To Victory In High Scoring Road Win

A blistering thirty-five point second quarter sent the Sharks on their way to an opening day win against Fujian. The home side saw Wang Zhelin put up 35 +12 but other than himself and Delonte West’s excellent shift (30 points, 12 rebounds, 8 assists and 4 steals), the Sturgeons lacked the firepower to keep up with the Sharks.

Continue reading “Shanghai 117 – Fujian Sturgeons 113: Wafer and Jackson Guide Sharks To Victory In High Scoring Road Win”

Yao Ming Refuses To Change His Mind; Sharks Will Not Sign Third Overseas Player

Well this is interesting. Sharks owner Yao Ming has come out and confirmed that Shanghai will not be taking up the option of a third foreign player slot (valid only for the current season) that they would be entitled to as a result of finishing in the bottom five of last year’s CBA. This would seemingly be the first time a team has decided not to take advantage of the rule since the ‘Deadpool’ roster clause was invented. Continue reading “Yao Ming Refuses To Change His Mind; Sharks Will Not Sign Third Overseas Player”

A Painful Five Months In Shanghai: Reviewing The Sharks 2012/13 CBA Season

Few teams have suffered such a violently reversal of fortunes in the last twelves months than the Shanghai Sharks. This time last year, the team had made the postseason despite being widely regarded as a bottom five team. Moreover, the Sharks did this on the back of the best defense in the CBA (have been ranked the worst in 2010/11) and a canny utilization of the triangle offense that helped bring many of Shanghai’s unheralded Chinese players into games. Continue reading “A Painful Five Months In Shanghai: Reviewing The Sharks 2012/13 CBA Season”

Fujian Sturgeons 114 – Shanghai Sharks 108: Shanghai Slip Down To The Bottom Despite Arenas’ Heroics

Midway through the second quarter, the cameras from Sohu panned across the Sharks bench. Shanghai were already down by 21 points with barely ninety seconds of the second quarter played. Liu Wei and Tseng Wen-ting had their hands spread across their faces in complete despondence  A couple of minutes later, the same camera crew zoned in on Wang Qun, who seemed to be looking into dead space as if he couldn’t believe what was happening. Fujian, a team in complete chaos, who had recently fired their head coach, had lost four games in a row and happened to be one of  the few teams with a similar record to the Sharks were running riot. Continue reading “Fujian Sturgeons 114 – Shanghai Sharks 108: Shanghai Slip Down To The Bottom Despite Arenas’ Heroics”