According to this Reuters report, team owner Wang Xingjiang indicates that the team is getting a bargain on the 32-year-old point guard, who wants to sell his sneakers in China. The CBA officially has a salary cap that limits players to $30,000 per month, which would leave a max of 60 grand Marbury could earn this season, if (BIG if) teams actually adhere to the salary cap.
Starbury is sure to get all the minutes he wants in the CBA, but can he put up with the hijinx of the Shanxi Zhongyu club? NBA coach Rick Turner spent some time with the team early in the 2008-09 season, and spoke of rambling motivational speeches from one coach, a 10:30 p.m. curfew, and requests that foreign players indulge the team owner in pre-game one-on-one sessions.
Turner also spoke of epic miscommunication with foreign players, leading to confusion about which of the three or four guys around actually had contracts and would suit up for the team, which, by CBA rules, can only have two foreign players. Looks like that could be a problem again—according to Asia-Basket, Shanxi currently has four foreigners living in Taiyuan, including Maurice Taylor, Lee Benson (picked up from the bankrupt Yunnan team that's been suspended from the league), Dontae Smith (who was unceremoniously given the boot last year when Bonzi showed up) and Kenny Adeleke. Coach Turner says he was let go himself in a pretty awkward way—informed after Christmas, as he was preparing to return to China from visiting his family back in the United States, that his services would no longer be needed.
But this post is about Marbury, and it can't be finished without asking some obvious questions: What is Shanxi's fascination with guys who are notoriously bad teammates best known for bad behavior? Can someone hurry up and create a reality show if this happens? And what is there to do in Taiyuan after 10:30 p.m. anyway?
Maybe Marbury's desire to sell his value-priced Starbury sneakers in China will keep him around once he realizes what he's gotten into, but don't bet on it.
Image: Photoshop genius courtesy of Fred Dintenfass
Tags: basketball, Bonzi Wells, CBA, NBA, Shanxi Zhongyu, Stephon Marbury