Temple product Khalif Wyatt will begin his professional career this season, but it won’t be in North America.
According to multiple sources, including Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer, Wyatt has signed a one-year deal with the Guangdong Southern Tigers of the Chinese Basketball Association. Wyatt’s agent, Stephen Pina, confirmed reports that his client had signed with the Tigers.
The state of the team he was recently cut from couldn’t be more different from the team he will be joining. Guangdong has appeared in every CBA final from 2003 through 2013, winning eight titles in in the past 10 years. He joins several former NBA players on the team, including Terrence Williams, Ike Diogu, and former lottery selection Yi Jianlian.
His failure to make one of the worst teams in the NBA or catch on with another team for the upcoming season dampens hope that Wyatt will be able to carve out an NBA career. Wyatt has been dogged by concerns over his below-average athleticism, and it’s fair to wonder if he’s destined to spend the duration of his playing days overseas.
Wyatt had done little to impress during the preseason, averaging just 4.3 points in 11.8 minutes per game during the exhibition slate. Some were left disappointed that the Norristown native was cut from a 76ers team that has no illusions of competing this year, so it’s nice to see him land on his feet with a guaranteed deal.
Happy trails, Khalif. The tank rolls on without you.