Kris Joseph signs in China, probably to avoid being cut by the Celtics again

Old/new/old friend Kris Joseph is moving as far away from Danny Ainge as humanly possible.

Joseph, who was cut by the Celtics in July after being acquired as a salary equalizer in the mega-deal between the Celtics and Nets, is heading to China. Here's the blurb from ESPN's rumor page.

Free agent forward Kris Joseph has made a decision where he's going to play this upcoming season.

Ryan Wolstat of Toronto Sun tweeted early Monday morning: "Canada's hoops roster is now set. Kris Joseph has left team to sign contract to play in China and Kyle Landry is out due to injury."

Teams in China don't like to give NBA-outs in player contracts and there is a good chance this applies to Joseph's contract. The earliest Joseph could attempt to re-sign with an NBA club is after the CBA season in late March to early April.

While most players would like the option of an opt-out, I can picture Joseph simply being happy knowing that there is no feasible way that Ainge can release him until at least late March.

As the ESPN bit mentions, this will probably result in a pay bump for Joseph as well. He made barely over $200,000 last year during his partial seasons with the Celtics and Nets, and the Chinese Basketball Association seems to pay American players pretty well.

Joseph is only 24 (turns 25 in December), so things could always change, but at this point is fully immersed in the role of NBA journeyman. Consider his path so far.

June 28, 2012 - Drafted by the Celtics. Spends training camp with the C's and then is spends the first two-plus months of the season shuttling back and forth between Boston and the NBDL Maine Red Claws. He appears in 15 games with Maine, and 6 with the Celtics.

January 6, 2013 - Released by the Celtics so that his full salary would not become guaranteed

February 6, 2013 - Joseph re-signs with the Red Claws, but is no longer property of the Celtics

February 11, 2013 - Traded by the Red Claws to the Springfield Armor

April 2, 2013 - Signs a 10-day contract with the Brooklyn Nets

April 12, 2013 - Signs for the rest of the season with the Nets with an option for 2013-14. Appears in 4 games with Brooklyn

July 12, 2013 - Traded by the Nets to the Celtics

July 15, 2013 - Waived by Boston

August 26, 2013 - Reportedly signs in China

Just to recap, in the first 14 months of his pro career Joseph has:

- Been a member of the Celtics organization twice

- Been a member of the Nets

- Been a member of two NDBL teams

- Gone to China

- Signed 5 contracts (one with Boston, one with the Red Claws, two with the Nets, one in China)

- Been released twice and traded twice


Playing basketball for a living is pretty awesome, but Joseph is a living example about why the life isn't always glamorous. Hopefully Joseph isn't traded from his Chinese team and actually gets a chance to play consistently before making another run at the NBA. Because once he comes back, it's right back to the life of a journeyman.

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