As we reported this week, San Antonio Spurs' Da'Sean Butler is off to Latvia to play with VEF Riga for the duration of the NBA lockout.
However, it would appear Butler was offered a two-week trial period for VEF to see if indeed his knee has fully recovered and to see if Butler is comfortable playing with VEF before offering him a long-term deal.
"I have no words for it," Butler said Monday from Cincinnati, Ohio. "It's so new to me now, so I'm just looking forward to going over there and having the opportunity to just see where I'm at and go from there."
"It's been really frustrating, but at the same time, this is something that's been taking my mind off it," says Butler. "My agents have been waiting as long as I have for me to play and they've been really supportive of me since my injury and throughout my rehab and everything like that."
As for making the decision to play overseas, Butler's agent, Chet Ervin, said it is all about getting his client time on the court.
"For a lot of guys, the decision to go over to Europe is a lot different than the decision for Da'Sean. His was, No. 1, just to play – to get back on the court and get some game action," says Ervin. "That said, the second-most important thing is making sure it's a good fit for him and a place where he could do well. This is where we felt was the best thing for him."
As I said before, if any player on the Spurs' roster who should get time on the court during the lockout and play organized basketball is Butler. Time on the court will do wonders for him to get in game-shape, to test his rehabbed knee and for his confidence.
Butler will suit up as early as Friday for VEF but is unlikely to see any action on the court due to unfamiliarity with the squad.