As Jannero Pargo bolted crumbling Moscow Dynamo for Greece's Olympiakos on Monday, it's increasingly unlikely that New York Knicks point guard Stephon Marbury is destined to resurface anywhere but the NBA this season.
Pargo signed a contract with the Greek team on Monday, two sources familiar with the negotiations said. Between the settlement with Dynamo and the new contract with Olympiakos, Pargo, an NBA-level veteran, will make the same gross amount for the season ($3.8 million) that he originally signed for in Russia over the summer.
Pargo was a valuable contributor to the New Orleans Hornets last summer, but his most lucrative free-agent offer came from Dynamo. As oil prices have plummeted, so have the financial coffers of several Russian teams. The days of their brash free-agent bids to American players appear stalled.
Olympiakos feigned interest with Marbury last week, but multiple sources say the team's ownership was angling only for some publicity. Olympiakos lost Josh Childress to a hernia and needed another player for the stretch run of the season. Marbury has had some interest from teams in Italy and Spain, a source close to him said, but those teams are too cash-strapped to make serious offers.
In an interview with the New York Post's Marc Berman published Monday, Marbury said the Boston Celtics are planning to sign him when he finally reaches a contract settlement with the Knicks. Neither Marbury, nor the Knicks, seem willing to budge on the buyout. Marbury wants all but $1 million of the $21 million owed him while the Knicks are trying to get him to take less to leave the franchise. He hasn't played a game for New York this season.
Marbury has been living in Los Angeles, where he has been working out, attending Lakers games and, apparently, trying to shop a reality show in Hollywood.