Allen Iverson Playing Basketball in China? : CBA Team Fujian Certainly Hopes So

Chris FaigCorrespondent ISeptember 24, 2010

Allen Iverson recently denied a one-year contract to play for Fujian SBS Xunxin of the Chinese Basketball Association offering about $4 million.  

But, new Fujian SBS Xunxin head coach Jay Humphries, a former NBA player, told Yahoo! Sports in an interview that the team will leave a spot vacant for the former superstar and thinks he can be a bigger hit and make more money than Stephon Marbury did last season.

In the 19-team Chinese Basketball Association, Fujian had a 17-15 record last season, which was good enough to reach the playoffs.  They were eliminated in the quarterfinals.  

With bright plans for the future, Humphries has signed a three-year contract with Fujian as head coach and plans to hire an American assistant coach, trainer, and strength and conditioning coach.  He is also in the works of signing two other Americans with NBA experience to this CBA team that seems to be on the rise to dominance. 

Throughout Iverson's 14-year NBA career, this future Hall of Famer has averaged an amazing 26.7 PPG, 6.2 APG, 3.7 RPG, and 2.2 SPG.  The 2010-11 NBA season is now approaching, with training camps beginning next week, and there is no sign of any team that seems interested in Iverson.  Now, Allen must focus on re-tweaking his game if he ever wants to earn the chance of a comeback attempt.

Stressing Iverson's demand in China, Humphries explained to Yahoo! Sports that "Allen comes behind only Kobe Bryant and Yao Ming in popularity here.  He's wanted in this country." 

Humphries has not yet spoken to Iverson directly, but has been in continuous contact with his agent Leon Rose hoping to do so in the near future.

The $4 million that Fujian has offered Iverson is more than any deal he would get with an NBA team.  

Plus, Iverson would make millions in endorsements and other various off-court ventures. Hoping he can get through to Iverson, Humphries went on to tell Yahoo! Sports that "being an NBA player of his caliber, it can be hard to make the adjustment.  But with his popularity in China and his ability to make money off the court in a country of this size, it can present an opportunity not available in the States.  I would like to let him know about my experiences, I don't know if he's spent time here."

This would be a good move for Iverson, now 35, who can prove to NBA teams that he can still contribute in a major way while making massive amounts of money as well as restructuring, extending, and strengthening his brand and image.