REPORT: Al Jefferson signs with Chinese team after being waived by Pacers
Earlier this offseason, the Indiana Pacers made the decision to part ways with veteran big man Al Jefferson after two seasons with the team.
It didn’t take long for Jefferson to make the next decision in his professional basketball career to ink a deal with the Xinjiang Guanghui of the Chinese Basketball Association for next season, according to Keith Smith of RealGM.
League sources: Al Jefferson has signed with Xinjiang Guanghui in China. Jefferson was recently waived by the Indiana Pacers. He'll be a candidate to return for the NBA playoff push after the CBA season ends/
— Keith Smith (@KeithSmithNBA) July 7, 2018
This move leaves the door open for Jefferson to latch onto a potential playoff team late this upcoming season if he can prove that he is still an asset off the bench. The 33-year-old may not be the player he once was, but he is a proven scorer that has the ability to be a factor as a rebounder as well. In the 2017-18 campaign, he played in 33 games with one start where he averaged 7.0 points on 53.4 percent from the field along with 4.0 rebounds in 13.4 minutes per contest.
He was quite productive in his limited action recording double-figure scoring eight times that includes one 20-point outing along with grabbing double-digit rebounds twice and notching a double-double. Jefferson still enough left in the tank to be an impact contributor off the bench 14 years into his NBA career.
This next venture should allow him to showcase that ability to a greater degree in a larger role in the CBA. Many former NBA players have taken this route to get back in the league while this present the opportunity for them to possibly sign in the late season with a team to compete in the playoffs. Time will tell if making this move will help him extend his career at least another year.