HoopsHype Sonny Weems rumors

July 27, 2011 Updates

How hard was it for Sonny to head overseas, knowing his relationship with DeMar and Amir, and did he talk to them prior to making the decision? And finally looking past this coming season, does Sonny want to stay in Toronto? Roger Montgomery: I don't think it was hard because he isn't actually in Europe yet. But I'm sure it will be a challenge when he is there and he sees DeMar and Amir playing on TV etc. But he knows our goal, so it's worth the sacrifice. They will always be boys. DeMar had some knowledge of the potential of Sonny going to Europe, although I'm not sure if Amir knew. I know it's hard for us not to do (focus on the future) but WE, Sonny and myself, have made a pledge to only focus on Zalgiris and this season. Europe will be an adjustment, and I want him totally focused on winning, getting better in the half court, being a lockdown defender, and his three-point shot. If, I mean WHEN, he does that, he will have his CHOICE of where to play in the future! Raptors HQ

July 16, 2011 Updates
July 12, 2011 Updates

Last week's decision by Sonny Weems to leave the NBA for a season to play in Lithuania wasn't difficult at all. In fact, it was a rather easy one for the West Memphis native. Weems' one-year deal with Zalgiris Kaunas of Lithuania will keep him in Europe for the entire season, regardless of how long the lockout lasts. "It was very easy because I want to play basketball," Weems said Monday. "I can't sit around and wait and see what the NBA is going to do. You never know. They may lock out the whole season and a lot of players will be scrambling, trying to go overseas. I went ahead and took the deal." Memphis Commercial Appeal

"I think it's a great situation for me because with me being a free agent this year, if the lockout ends Dec. 1, we don't have time to negotiate free agency and I'd have to play for the qualifying offer, which me and my agent decided we didn't want to do," Weems said. "They wouldn't have enough time to negotiate a deal for me, so my best bet was to go overseas and boost my stock up a little bit because the NBA pays a lot of attention to overseas players. "Me playing over there will give me great experience." Memphis Commercial Appeal

July 11, 2011 Updates

Deron Williams’ decision to play in Turkey during the lockout could open the door for other NBA stars. Unless FIBA shuts it. Basketball’s governing body has to sign off on these deals for players under contract, and the NBA Players’ Association expects that it will. But what if it doesn’t? “I don’t think that’s going to be an easy transaction, to be honest with you,” said agent Roger Montgomery, whose client Sonny Weems signed in Lithuania last week after playing last season with the Toronto Raptors. Register-Guard

If FIBA says it will offer letters of clearance, the Williams route becomes available for any other NBA players who want to play, not stay, in Europe. Kobe Bryant, Amare Stoudemire, Carmelo Anthony and Dwyane Wade were among the players who reportedly would be open to playing overseas. But don’t plan on that exodus just yet. One agent said he “wouldn’t be shocked” if FIBA rejects the kind of contract they’d be seeking and wondered if many European teams would even offer them. Register-Guard

July 10, 2011 Updates

Sonny Weems: Happy with my decision that I made to go to Kaunas, thanks to my new fans for reaching out to me and I can't wait to play for you guys. Twitter

July 8, 2011 Updates

Montgomery says Weems could play 70 games next season between the Lithuanian and Euroleague schedules, a good opportunity for a young player instead of losing the entire year if the NBA and players don’t reach a deal. He didn’t disclose the value of the contract. Montgomery started looking for opportunities for his players at the urging of the union, which had been telling agents to be prepared for a long work stoppage. He quickly found a match in the Lithuanian champs, a team he described as needing “one little boost to get over that hump” and believes the swingman is that player. “Sonny will be able to go in and make a true impact,” Montgomery said, helping a team “really in the middle of the pack maybe go to the top of the pack.” National Post

Weems, who turned 25 Friday, is not the quality of Deron Williams, who Thursday was nearing a deal to join Besiktas of Turkey in September if the lockout remains. But Montgomery said Weems was the first from the NBA to agree to the deal without the option to return once the lockout ends. That could be a while and Montgomery wasn’t willing to wait. “There’s no way I’m going sit by idly and wait for David Stern to decide if he wants to be fair,” Montgomery said. National Post

July 6, 2011 Updates

There’s a strong possibility that Weems, one of a handful of U.S.-based pro hoopsters conjuring profitable career choices in the midst of an NBA lockout, will spend the coming season playing in Europe. Sources say Weems is expected to sign a one-year deal to play with Lithuania’s BC Zalgiris in the coming days. Toronto Star

While Weems will have to make do without NBA-style luxuries such charter air travel and five-star hotels — European teams mostly fly commercial and sleep in the four-star accommodations provided by the host team — the signing will have its perks. He will receive the Euro-standard benefit of the use of a gratis apartment and automobile. And though the team and Weems are still putting the finishing touches on the deal, sources say it’s expected Weems will be paid an after-tax net salary approaching 1 million euros, or about $1.4 million (U.S.). That’s a relatively rich deal for a player who earned a pre-tax salary of about $854,389 (U.S.) in Toronto this past season. Toronto Star

July 5, 2011 Updates
July 2, 2011 Updates

Sonny Weems has decided to take advantage of his overseas eligibility and is on the verge of signing a one-year contract with a team in Europe, according sources close to the situation. The Toronto Raptors extended a qualifying offer to Weems last Monday, which would have made him a restricted free agent. However, Weems felt that signing overseas was the best option for him so that he could continue playing and developing his game during this work stoppage. HoopsWorld

June 27, 2011 Updates

The Toronto Raptors announced Monday they have extended a qualifying offer to restricted free agent guard-forward Sonny Weems. Per team policy, financial details were not disclosed. In accordance with the league’s collective bargaining agreement, in order for a team to retain its rights of first refusal with respect to a restricted free agent it must tender the player a qualifying offer prior to June 30. A restricted free agent may sign an offer sheet with any team, but is subject to a right of first refusal in favour of the NBA team for which the player last played. NBA.com

June 14, 2011 Updates
April 1, 2011 Updates

Before he died in 1999, Wilt Chamberlain, the NBA legend, claimed to have shared the intimate company of 20,000 women. This week Sonny Weems, the not -yet-legendary Raptor, appeared to be seeking the companionship of one. “Think (it’s) time for me to get a girlfriend,” Weems wrote on his Twitter page Sunday. In the wake of that transmission Weems said he has received “fifty-something” responses from Twitter users claiming to be girlfriend material. That number, like Chamberlain’s infamous self-count of the notches on his bed post, has not been independently verified. Toronto Star

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