Hasheem Thabeet seals move to Taiwan League side   

03Nov 2021
Nassir Nchimbi
Dar es Salaam
The Guardian
Hasheem Thabeet seals move to Taiwan League side   

TANZANIAN professional basketball player, Hasheem Thabeet, has sealed a move to Tainan Taigang Falcon Club, which is participating in T1 League in Taiwan, as an unrestricted free agent.

Tanzanian basketball player, Hasheem Thabeet.

Thabeet now aged 34 joins the Falcons from Hnischu JKO Lioneers of Taiwan P League Plus, where he served with great success last season as he was named league MVP, Defensive Player of Year, rebounding champion, and blocking champion, with all accolades under his name.

The former No. 2 in USA's National Basketball Association (NBA) League Draft, Thabeet, who is 221 cm tall, averaged 18.3 points, 14.3 rebounds, 3.3 blocks, 1.5 steals, and 1.4 assists in the Taiwan P League Plus last season.

At one point, the NBA League teams were looking forward to his return, but he decided to maintain his peak, strength and chose to return to Taiwan to join the T1 Tainan Taigang Falcons basketball outfit.

The new Taiwan T1 League formed this year, will be one of two professional basketball leagues in Taiwan along with the P.League +

Apart from Thabeet's Falcons, other clubs in the inaugural season of the T1 League are the Taipei-based Taiwan Beer HeroBears, New Taipei CTBC DEA, Taichung Suns, Tainan TSG GhostHawks, and the Kaohsiung Aquas.

It should be noted that Thabeet played for the Tanzanian outfit, Savio Basketball Club, this year.

The basketballer guided the squad to clinch the 2021 Dar es Salaam Regional Basketball Association (RBA) League's silverware with victory over Army Basketball Club in five-match finals and emerged as MVP of the showdown.

The decision to return to Tanzania was largely due to the Coronavirus crisis that sent the Taiwan P League into suspension.

The center opted to serve Savio to keep himself fit amid rumours that he was looking into the possibility of returning to the NBA League.

Thabeet most recently played for the Oklahoma City Thunder in the NBA League in 2014.

He had also played for Memphis Grizzlies (most notably), Portland Trail Blazers, Houston Rockets, and the Oklahoma City Thunders.

The most recent team he played for in America was the Fort Wayne Mad Ants in 2019.

He moved to the squad after he was drafted in the first round of the G-League draft that season.

The center played nine games for Mad Ants and averaged 1.7 blocks per game in just over 16 minutes per game.

Thabeet is now in great shape ahead of the new season.

Before his move to the T1 League side, he had good numbers to give a good reason to believe that he could help an NBA League team off the bench after his wonderful display last season.

Pre-COVID-19, he had workouts with Milwaukee Bucks, Denver Nuggets, Golden State Warriors, New York Knicks, and Philadelphia 76ers in the last few years.

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