We’ve already discussed 17-year-old high school kid Jeremy Tyler, who wants to play in Europe for two years in order to prepare himself for the NBA. Originally, he was put in contact with teams in Spain, Italy and Israel. But today, the New York Times published an article reporting that the man who arranged the deal will fly to Athens.
According to Pete Thamel form the New York Times, Sonny Vaccaro will fly to Athens today in order to talk with both top teams from the Greek capital, Panathinaikos Athens and Olympiacos Piraeus. This sounds pretty incredible to me, as the Greek league allows only two roster spots for American players. And giving up one of these two spots for a 17-year-old seems like a crazy deal in my eyes.
The article quotes the months-old words of Olympiacos owners, when they stated that they would enter the NBA free agent market again this summer, if the Josh Childress deal was a success. This is debatable and the monetary environment has also changed in the last couple of months. So it would surprise me even more if any team goes into the direction stated by Vaccaro when it comes to the deal he is seeking for Tyler.
Vaccaro said that he expected a deal with a club by the middle of June and that it was possible Tyler could go to Europe to audition for teams. He said the monetary figure would likely be “mid six figures.”
A mid-six figure deal sounds huge to me, at least if this is on an annual basis. But still, if the two-year contract is in that area, this would mean that Tyler could expect something around EUR or USD 200,000 per year, which corresponds to an established Euroleague player at the moment, something that Tyler is not at all. But the kid himself is pretty confident about what’s going to happen:
“I have dreams every night about me playing,” he said. “Mentally, I’m pretty ready to go out there and play. I want to show the world that this wasn’t a bad decision.”
Well, Jeremy, dream on…