China intl basketball player Liu joins Beijing Ducks on ‘low-salary’ contract

Source:Global Times Published: 2017/8/1 23:18:39

China international point guard Liu Xiaoyu has penned a three-year deal with two-time Chinese Basketball Association (CBA) champions the Beijing Ducks, the capital-based team announced Tuesday.

"Liu Xiaoyu is not joining the Beijing Ducks on a big-salary contract," the Beijing Ducks said in a statement. "We are not pursuing well-paid players but ­players demanded by the coach."

Liu, 28, vowed to fight for "better achievement" with the Ducks on Tuesday in a Weibo statement.

The 1.88-meter point guard rose to fame when playing for eight-time CBA champions Guangdong South China ­Tigers from 2011 to 2015 as a regular starter. He joined the Shanghai Sharks in 2015 after an injury-prone season with Guangdong, before leading the Sharks to a revival, where he contributed 13.3 points as well as 4.2 assists on average, in the past season.

The Ducks finished the regular season out of the top eight, which did not earn themselves a berth for the CBA playoffs. They are expected to have a rebuilding year after head coach Min Lulei - who masterminded the team's triumph in the 2011-12, 2013-14 and 2014-15 seasons - stepped down from the position.

Former Chinese national team assistant coach Greek Yannis Christopoulos was named the head coach of the Ducks, while Min was promoted as the "general coach," which many considered a ceremonial role.

Star point guard Stephon Marbury, who was the mainstay in Min's squad that triumphed in the league for three times, also left the Ducks for cross-town team Beijing Fly Dragons after the Ducks decided not to extend the 40-year-old veteran's contract.

Longtime serving center Randolph Morris was also rumored to leave the club, prompting some fans to voice concerns over the board's transfer decisions.

"It's weird we are signing Liu on a 'low-salary' contract in a rebuilding year rather than a title defense year," said a Ducks fan on Weibo. "I don't see the Ducks finishing the rebuilding in the upcoming year."

The Ducks are on the road for preseason training in the US.



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