Suns' Brooks signs deal to play in China

The Vertical
Yahoo! Sports

Phoenix Suns restricted free-agent guard Aaron Brooks(notes) has agreed to a one-year deal with Guandong of the Chinese Basketball Association, sources told Yahoo! Sports.

Brooks is a popular player in China from his days of playing with Yao Ming(notes) in Houston. He’s been talking on and off with Chinese teams for several months, and finally agreed to a deal believed to be worth more than $2 million for the season.

Under Chinese Basketball Association rules, Brooks is obligated to play the full season in China without an opt-out clause should the NBA lockout end. The league starts its schedule over the weekend and the regular season runs through the middle of February.

Brooks will play with Washington Wizards free agent Yi Jianlian(notes) in Guangdong. The roster also includes Americans Fred Jones(notes) and Lester Hudson(notes).

Brooks, who averaged 10.7 points and 3.9 assists for the Rockets and Suns a season ago, is one of several NBA free agents who’ve made the move to China this season. Others include Kenyon Martin(notes), Wilson Chandler(notes) and J.R. Smith(notes). Yahoo! Sports reported on Wednesday that guard Luther Head(notes), who played for the Sacramento Kings a year ago, signed with Jiangsu. Stephon Marbury(notes) will be playing his third season in China.

Brooks, 26, was the 26th overall pick in the 2007 draft and played 3½ seasons in Houston until he was traded to the Suns in February.

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