Jahlil Okafor, former third overall draft pick of the Sixers, is headed to China. The Zhejiang Guangsha Lions paid a release clause to Casademont Zaragoza in Spain to facilitate the move. The news was announced by his former team.
As most of you know, Okafor was the third pick in the 2015 NBA Draft, taken ahead of Kristaps Porzingis, Myles Turner and Devin Booker. The Sixers’ front office, led by Sam Hinkie at the time, drafted Okafor. It was Bryan Colangelo who eventually traded Okafor to the Brooklyn Nets along with Nik Stauskas and a future second-round pick (that would turn into Nic Claxton) for Trevor Booker.
Okafor would go on to sign with the New Orleans Pelicans, Detroit Pistons and with the Atlanta Hawks on a training camp deal before being waived. The Duke product signed with Zhejiang Guangsha during the 2021-22 season, with his G League rights being acquired by the Mexico City Capitanes in September 2022. He played just three games for the Capitanes before his rights were actually traded to the Delaware Blue Coats, the Sixers’ G League affiliate.
Instead of suiting up in Delaware, Okafor joined Casademont Zaragoza in Spain. In 13 games with Zaragoza, Okafor had averaged 11.8 points and 5.0 rebounds per game. In his previous stint in China, the then 27-year-old center averaged 13.0 points and 8.7 rebounds in 23.4 minutes per game.