Lance Allred Rumors
“Deron likes to run the show, he doesn’t really listen to coaches much. But if you thought Jerry Sloan was tough, these European coaches are lockdown. When I was in the Ukraine, we practiced twice a day, five days a week. People say, ‘Oh, you only play one game a week, you can relax and rest your body.’ Not the case. … It’s ultracompetitive with the team, plus the coach wants to control everything.”
“Plus, the travel, you’re usually getting on a bus, you don’t have your own private jet, usually. The little things that we tend to forget as NBA players, those are gone in Europe. I’ve known a lot of NBA players who go over and after about a month, they say, ‘I can’t do this anymore.’ Even if they’re getting paid, it’s just the living conditions, the apartments they put you in. … You have a lot of NBA players who go over, and they think it’s going to be great and they just kind of disappear. It doesn’t match the lifestyle they want and have in the NBA. “That’s a surprise a lot of NBA players are going to be in for.”
A few years ago, Allred signed a deal to play in Italy for $160,000. “I didn’t receive a dime of it, even though it was FIBA-guaranteed. The team folded two months later. It’s such a crapshoot.” Beyond the finances are the playing conditions. “NBA players are so used to a posh lifestyle — four-star hotels, traveling accommodations, unlimited towels, Gatorade and everything. You’re so used to the comforts of a nice shower, and masseuses. Every European locker room I’ve ever been in doesn’t even live up to my college locker rooms. There’s grease-stained floors, cockroaches, showerheads that don’t work. Those [fine] kinds of accommodations are gone.
Allred said the norm overseas is for the team to script out daily routines of the players: “You have no control over your personal life. In the NBA, you show up, do your job and do whatever you want. In Europe, you have an itinerary, you eat as a team every meal, you have to be places at a certain time.” It’s reasonable to assume that even a tough coach would bend a bit for a star NBA player such as Williams, but Allred said there are sharp knives all around if those exceptions are made. “Is a coach going to give Deron a double standard? In Europe, if you do that, there’s going to be a mutiny with the other guys.”
SI.com: You played for a team in Napoli in 2009, and things were so bad there that you posted on blog about the conditions and the problems you had with the coach. Did you know at the time that you were crossing a line there? Allred: Oh, yeah. But the coach had already told me, “I don’t want you here.” I thought I was done. So I figured, I’ll just make all their lives miserable, too. It was a silly and impulsive decision to make. SI.com: Your contract with that team was for $160,000. Did you ever see any of that money? Allred: No. SI.com: You went from there to another Italian team, and then to a Ukranian team. You’ve played in the NBA and in the D-League. After taxes, how much money have you actually made playing basketball? Allred: [doing some calculations in his head] About $120,000. That’s over five years, so you’re talking less than $30,000 per year. It’s not nearly as lucrative for someone like me as people imagine.
Otago Nuggets centre Lance Allred is really going to miss “mince pies and L&P”. He is also going to miss the Nuggets’ last three games. The 2.11m American has been called up for a trial with NBA team the Charlotte Bobcats and leaves Dunedin on Monday. It is a fantastic opportunity for Allred. The 30-year-old made three appearances for the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2008 and he would like to add to his NBA record. But there is also some sadness leaving the team before the season is complete. “The thing is I’m happy here and I haven’t been homesick one day, so it’s tough to leave,” he said. “But the important thing is I’m leaving on good terms and therefore that leaves the window open to hopefully return.”