HoopsHype Fuenlabrada rumors

October 5, 2012 Updates
December 21, 2011 Updates
December 20, 2011 Updates

The basic facts: Biyombo had signed a contract that would have paid him about $100,000 had he played for Fuenlabrada this season. The team clamed Biyombo owed Fuenlabrada 80 percent of his earnings, world-wide, for the foreseeable future. Bell understandably was looking to minimize what Biyombo would have to pay. So he offered a $400,000 settlement, according to a source privy to the negotiations. That only stiffened Fuenlabrada's resolve, and there was concern whether Biyombo - the No. 7 overall pick in the draft - would play for the Bobcats at this season. That's when Higgins, backed by a half-dozen attorneys, interceded. "After communicating with the agent and seeing nothing was getting done, we felt we had to take control of this process,'' Higgins told the Observer on Monday. "We invited (Fuenlabrada management) to come talk with us. We initially said we would come over there and they insisted on coming to the States, which was fine with us." Charlotte Observer

So Wednesday and Thursday of last week, Bobcats and Fuenlabrada management huddled. What Higgins first heard was stunning: Fuenlabrada expected 4 million Euros - about $5.2 million - to permit Biyombo to sign with the Bobcats. "I couldn't believe it,'' Higgins recalled. "They were steadfast on the 4 million. At that point, talks basically broke down. We knew what we could do," and that wasn't doable. Charlotte Observer

The Bobcats spared no effort trying to resolve this. Aside from their in-house attorney, Andre Walters, and general manager Rich Cho (who has a law degree) the team retained a New York law firm and a local attorney fluent in Spanish to aid in the talks. Negotiating on Biyombo's behalf, they made one last offer of about $1.5 million -- $525,000 to be paid by the Bobcats and the rest by Biyombo. That offer was rejected as the meetings with Fuenlabrada broke up Thursday. Biyombo kept sitting out practice, looking more glum by the day. Higgins began seriously considering the possibility the No. 7 pick might never play this season."I was so afraid for the kid," Higgins said. "Every time we felt like there was a clear-cut resolution, something would change. Always a different speed bump along the road." Charlotte Observer

December 19, 2011 Updates

Forward Bismack Biyombo is free to join the Charlotte Bobcats after agreeing to pay the buyout clause to release him from his contract with Spanish club Fuenlabrada. Fuenlabrada said on Monday that Biyombo had agreed to pay the 1.2 million euros (US$1.5 million) clause that will free him from the remaining two years of his contract. Winnipeg Free Press

December 16, 2011 Updates

The future of Bismack Biyombo is up in the air. The young player, picked by Charlotte Bobcats in the last NBA draft is taken hostage by Fuenlabrada who is asking €4M as buyout to let him leave for the States. Sportando

Fuenlabrada valued the player €4M: 1.2M as buyout, plus the federal rights until December 2014, plus a fine for having missed 4 games and 64 practices last season before ACB playoffs when Biyombo left to have some workouts in the States. The Spanish team is ready to negotiate a buyout to help Biyombo to leave but the NBA team are allowed to pay maximum $500.000 as buyout and the difference, in this case, should be paid by the young player. Sportando

December 1, 2011 Updates

Today is the first day NBA players are welcome back in team training facilities. It's unclear how many Bobcats are back in Charlotte, but Higgins said Biyombo might be here soon, despite him still being under contract to a Spanish team. The Observer reported Tuesday that Biyombo is suing that team in Spain for breach of contract. The trial is set to begin Dec,. 19, and presumably if Biyombo wins, he would be free to sign with the Bobcats. His Spanish team wants a seven-figure transfer fee before Biyombo is allowed to sign with the Bobcats. Higgins described the Biyombo contract situation as "forever evolving.'' NBA rules allow the Bobcats to pay up to $500,000 toward a transfer fee. Any more would be Biyombo's responsibility. Biyombo has said repeatedly and emphatically that he'll play for the Bobcats this season. Charlotte Observer

November 28, 2011 Updates

Some of you have been asking about Charlotte Bobcats rookie Bismack Biyombo and his contract complications in Spain. I just had a brief conversation with Biyombo's USA-based agent, Joel Bell. He said there's a civil trial scheduled for Dec. 19 in Spain. Biyombo is suing Fuenlabrada, the team Biyombo played for last season, for breach of contract. If Biyombo won that suit, he'd lkely be free of that contract and able to sign with the Bobcats. This has now become a more pressing issue, with the lockout likely to end in time for training camps and free-agency to start Dec. 9. Charlotte Observer

September 28, 2011 Updates

Any rumor missing? E-mail us at   hoopshype@hoopshype.com.