Carlos Boozer contacted Spurs about making NBA comeback
Free agent Carlos Boozer was absent from NBA circles last season, after a short one-season stint with the Los Angeles Lakers. This summer, the 13-year NBA veteran approached the San Antonio Spurs, looking for another chance of helping an NBA team with championship hopes.
General manager R.C. Buford suggested he play in San Antonio’s June minicamp, but Boozer declined.
“Then he was going to come for a piece of our summer league, but then he said, ‘Nah, I’m not going to do that, either,'” Buford told ESPN’s Senior Writer Jackie McMullan. “So we moved on. How can we evaluate him if he’s not playing?”
While the Spurs culture holds a no-nonsense approach with all their players, Buford’s take is spot-on. Boozer was hoping for a team like San Antonio to fall head over heels to sign him, but that team has done just fine with the pieces they’ve had through the years. Why risk millions for someone that won’t perform in front of their eyes?
Boozer is a few steps slower than he was in his days in Utah, not quite the double-double machine he used to be. While he still provides some double-digit scoring and rebounding, he’s not a defensive presence and lacks the intangibles that the Spurs look for at that position.
Had he shown up in their summer league – which most veterans find humiliating – he probably wouldn’t have made the impression needed to secure a contract.
Boozer ended up signing with the Guangdong Tigers of the Chinese Basketball Association on July 30. He last averaged 11.8 points and 6.8 rebounds for the Lakers in his only season with them in 2014-15.