James Gist Gone! Spurs lose another draftee to Europe

Juki MolCorrespondent IAugust 11, 2008

A pro basketball club based in Biella, Italy is announcing that they have signed Spurs second-round draftee, James Gist, to a contract.

Pallacanestro Biella, otherwise known as Angelico Biella for sponsorship reasons, had been rumored to have signed Gist last week, but the Spurs denied those rumors and no official reports substantiated those rumors until now.

Now, the Italian team has released an official statement saying that Gist has indeed come to terms with the club and will be playing in Europe.

"We are very excited to have James Gist joining our team," said coach Luca Bechi on the team's official website.

"He comes from a prestigious university (Maryland) and he's a versatile athlete, from the best there is. He has a great mid-range jumper and has the ability to play very well around the rim."

Gist joins Tiago Splitter on the list of Spurs draftees who opted to play in Europe instead of developing within the Spurs' system or playing in San Antonio.

The Spurs have yet to comment on this news item, but fans in the SpursReport forums are not happy about the news.

Terms of the contract were not immediately available, but in the NBA second round picks and un-drafted free agents usually get a non-guaranteed contract for the league minimum of around $400,000 with a team option for the second year if a team chooses. It is likely that Gist was offered a more lucrative deal in Italy.