Dallas looks to sign Chinese swingman Ding Yanyuhang for Summer League, maybe more

Getty Images
3 Comments

Is Ding Yanyuhang ready for the NBA?

The 6’7″ swingman is the best native player in the Chinese Basketball Association right now, averaging 24.2 points per game last season. He’s not been incredibly efficient (32.1 percent from three) but he is a guy who can get buckets, and he won the Domestic Player MVP last season.

That has peaked the interest of the Dallas Mavericks, reports the Dallas Morning News. Well, the scoring and maybe the potential to reach deep into the Chinese market.

The Mavericks have put the wheels in motion to sign veteran Chinese swingman Ding Yanyuhang this summer and have him play in their summer league and likely be on their training camp roster, president of basketball operations Donnie Nelson said…

He has become one of China’s best players and the Mavericks are hopeful he can grow into a solid NBA contributor. The fact that he fits in with the team’s youth movement helps, too.

There would be other benefits to having him on the roster.

Tapping into the huge Chinese market has been a focus of the NBA for several years. Signing a player born in China would be a tremendous boost for the Mavericks’ global cache. And it would give them an entryway into a social media market that has exploded.

The signing cannot happen until July 1. Nelson went on to say Ding could be a candidate for the new two-way contracts allowed in the NBA next year so he could get seasoning in the D-League and still get time with the big club.

Ding started for the Chinese national team against the USA in the Rio Olympics and was 1-of-6 for four points, and over the course of the Rio games averaged 4.4 points per game on 31 percent shooting. Still, this seems like a good low-risk move. Sign him, bring him in for Summer League and see there how he stacks up — and if you want something more. Maybe, maybe not, but it’s worth a look.