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Tracy McGrady says he’s not playing in China or overseas anywhere

The Philippine Star, an international newspaper, recently reported that Tracy McGrady was close to signing with Foshon Dralions in China:

Marcus Douthit is all set to play for the Foshan Dralions in the Chinese league this season and his import partner could be 14-year NBA veteran Tracy McGrady.

The 6-11, 230-pound Douthit has come to terms on a five-month contract to play for Foshan whose head coach is former NBA guard Jay Humphries. Douthit, 31, said he was told that Foshan officials were trying to sign up McGrady and the deal is “in the works.” A source said Douthit will receive $60,000 a month with the Dralions.

McGrady texted Vince Ellis of the Detroit Free Press to deny that report:

In fact, McGrady ruled out even exploring the option of playing overseas if the lockout threatens the regular season, which is scheduled to begin next month.

“Not at all,” McGrady texted the Free Press this afternoon when asked whether playing overseas is an option.

From a cultural standpoint, McGrady going to China makes some sense. He toured the country this summer and he remains one of the most popular players there, partially because of his history as one of the NBA’s greatest players in the 2000s and partially because he got a lot of exposure in China by playing with Yao Ming in Houston. But McGrady also is getting older and just had a healthy season after a brutal string of injuries. Going overseas makes a lot of sense for young players who need minutes to improve, but a player like McGrady would risk a lot if he got hurt, possibly jeopardizing his chances at another NBA contract.

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