UNICS Kazan sign former NBA shooting guard O.J. Mayo
O.J. Mayo is the latest signee for UNICS Kazan. The 33-year-old will make his European debut for the Russian club after three years across many Asian teams. Mayo was a top NBA prospect but he struggled with consistency.
Mayo is a natural scorer because his offensive arsenal fits the modern style. He can shoot from anywhere on the court but he can also dribble past defenders and attack the basket. One of the worst knocks to his game was his inefficiency which will likely go up now since he will play with multiple reliable options in the UNICS lineup.
Ever since he left the NBA, Mayo has shown some improvements in his efficiency. His three-point shooting has been more accurate and he has even become a solid playmaker. UNICS made an excellent signing with Mayo because he will be playing on a bigger stage and he can emerge as a top player in Europe.
In eight NBA seasons, Mayo carved out a role as a reliable scorer both in the starting lineup and the bench. However, as time went on, Mayo started to slow down and he fell off from his superb first few years with the Memphis Grizzlies.
He was tapped as one of the top shooting guards of the future at the time but it did not pan out. He was the third overall pick in the 2008 NBA Draft which was filled with star players like Derrick Rose, Russell Westbrook, Kevin Love, and Brook Lopez. The first two players ended up becoming MVPs while the latter two were key pieces in championship-winning teams.
Mayo was branded a ‘bust’ by fans but that was not the case. He was underwhelming but he showed flashes of promise during his time with the Grizz. He had a quiet resurgence with the Dallas Mavericks but he struggled with his place in the Milwaukee Bucks lineup.
UNICS is excited to have Mayo in the lineup because he will surely be motivated when he plays. You can expect that Mayo will play like his usual explosive self en route to helping UNICS to a potential title across different leagues.
Words: Cholo Martin