If I were an NBA player watching “the nuclear winter of the NBA” detonate yesterday, I would want to sign up with a team like Maccabi Tel Aviv right about now too. I’m not an NBA’er, Omri Casspi is though, and after he watched what went down yesterday in New York along with all of us it was announced that he’d be doing specifically that.
According to The Cleveland Plain Dealer, Casspi has decided to rejoin the team that he played for prior to entering the Association for the duration of this NBA lockout:
Cavaliers swingman Omri Casspi has opted to play overseas until the NBA lockout ends. He has signed with Israeli powerhouse Maccabi Tel Aviv, according to Creative Artists Agency which represents him, and he will join the club in several weeks.
Currently Los Angeles Laker Jordan Farmar is and has been playing for Maccabi as the team’s PG. Casspi, the newest member of the Cleveland Cavaliers, will team up with Farmer to make what has to be a squad favored to win the Euroleague Title I’d imagine once he gets there, or at least contend for it.
To be honest I have no idea who else is on the team besides Farmar and Omri, so we’ll see what happens. Especially since Omri will not be joining the team until January. This from Casspi’s Facebook Page via The Jerusalem Post:
“Maccabi and I have signed the contract and I’m as happy as can be to be returning home,” Casspi wrote on his Facebook page. “I’m so excited to be coming back home, to my family and the best fans in the world.”
“I will be coming in January assuming the NBA season is canceled. The reason I will only be arriving in January is because I don’t want Maccabi to suffer from having two players leaving the team at once should there eventually be an NBA season.”
Basically he is saying if there is not an NBA season by January there will not be one at all. If he joined the team now, he wouldn’t want both Farmar and him to bail in late December or early January leaving Maccabi short-handed having to adjust on the fly. I imagine anybody reading that quote picked up on this, I just thought I’d make that clear.
So I guess come January the fans of Maccabi Tel Aviv will be super pumped to see Omri arrive, while the fans in Cleveland, OH will continue to await his debut with the Cavaliers for a while longer. Smart move by Casspi though for sure. At least he can play competitively somewhere in the short-term.