Xinjiang to re-sign Douby to record contract, hire Donewald as head coach

Quincy Douby will be back in Xinjiang next season for another run at a title.

The Xinjiang Guanghui Flying Tigers got closer to their first ever Chinese Basketball Association championship than ever before last season by spending a record amount of money on foreign imports.

Bent on finally getting over the hump, Xinjiang is set to spend even more.

Going absolutely for broke in their obsession to win a championship, Xinjiang is set to bring in a duo of high-profile foreigners, one coach and one player, at a record amount of money.  According to Sina, Xinjiang will give out the most money to a single player in CBA history when they re-sign Quincy Douby to a reported a one-year $2 million extension this summer.  And according to Basketball Pioneers, Xinjiang will pay Chinese National Team head coach, Bob Donewald, to a record $1 million next year to act as their head coach.

Though neither has officially signed as of yet, their signatures are expected soon.

“Douby was always going to re-sign with Xinjiang,” said Douby’s Chinese agent to a Sina reporter.  ”Right now, negotiations are pretty much wrapped up.  He absolutely won’t be playing in any other country next year, including the NBA, and he definitely will not be playing for another CBA team.  There is only one possibility, and  that is re-signing with Xinjiang.  The only thing that has yet to be done is signing the contract.  We just have to discuss the final salary figure.”

Whatever the final figure will be, it will be more than Douby earned last year, and it will be more than anyone will be earning in the NBA for the foreseeable future.  Last season, frustrated from two straight losses in the CBA finals to the Guangdong Hongyuan Southern Tigers, Xinjiang spent a combined $3 million on Douby and James Singleton, who rejected a one-year offer from the Washington Wizards for an estimated $1.6 million contract to play in China.  Although Douby and Singleton led Xinjiang to a 31-1 regular season record, Xinjiang again came up short in the finals to Guangdong, losing 4-2 in one of the most competitive playoff series in CBA history.

“Two months ago, we contacted Xinjiang to propose a $2.5 million salary for next year.  Since then, we’ve been in ongoing negotiations.  Right now, the amount is around the $2 million range.”

In his first season in China, the former Rutgers standout averaged 31.9 points, 4.1 rebounds, 4.6 assists and 3.7 steals a game to record one of the finest individual seasons in league history.  He also set league records for most points scored in an All-Star game and most points scored in a CBA Finals game.

For Donewald however, signing with Xinjiang was not always expected.  In fact, quite the opposite.  The Chinese basketball world was left stunned on Wednesday when the Shanghai Sharks, who Donewald had coached for the last two years, announced on their official team website that the two sides had agreed not to pick up the American’s option for a final year.  Donewald had been with the Sharks, which is owned by Yao Ming, since 2009.

As also the head coach of the Chinese National Team, a position he rose up to in April 2010 after leading the Sharks to a 27-5 record in his first season after they had finished in last place at 6-44 the year before, Donewald carries considerable influence and respect inside of China.  He is most admired for his ability to develop Chinese talent, while also instill confidence and passion into all of his players.  Based in the remote northwestern province of Xinjiang, the Flying Tigers do not have anywhere close to the level of domestic players other teams have, specifically Guangdong, who carries up to seven Senior National Team members on their roster in addition to two American imports.

When asked for a comment about his widely reported move to Xinjiang by a reporter yesterday, Donewald gave no comment.

“It looks like it’s going to rain, I gotta go,” laughed Donewald.

With Donewald expected to officially sign with Xinjiang by the end of next week, Jiang Xingquan will be forced to resign. He will likely remain with the team as a consultant.

In two seasons with the Sharks, Donewald compiled an overall record of 41-30, including a semi-finals appearance in 2009-10.  He worked as an assistant coach for the Cleveland Cavaliers and New Orleans Hornets from 2001 to 2004. Previous to working in China, Donewald coached in the U.S., England Brazil and the Ukraine.

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