Donnie McGrath is on his way to Kaunas. His agent Lou Diamantopoulos confirmed to DELFI.lt that the agreement between his client and Zalgiris was reached.
After the shocking departure of Ibrahim Jaaber, Zalgiris was in search for another point guard. The club’s representatives declared that the primary target was a top-class playmaker.
According to various sources, Jeremy Pargo was offered to the Lithuanian club in process. The name of former Valencia guard Chris Quinn has also been mentioned.
McGrath, 28, has only appeared once in Euroleague before when he was a member of Virtus Bologna in 2007-2008 season. The American/Irish guard was a member of a Greek side PAOK before joining Zalgiris.
During 16 Greek league games McGrath averaged 13.9 points and 3.9 rebounds. He was one of the key player for the Thessaloniki side. Understandably, PAOK was reluctant to let the player go easily.
The player himself is excited about the opportunity to return to Euroleague. McGrath spent the major part of his career in Italian and Greek leagues having played there for six different teams.
Recent statements by Zalgiris owner Vladimir Romanov made the addition of a new player seem controversial. Romanov visited Kaunas municipality asking for 5 million litas (around €1.5M) that the municipality, according to him, promised to give to Zalgiris.
After receiving a negative answer from the city municipality, Romanov made further comments stating that the clubs has a debt of 25 million litas (around €7.3M) and that the players are not being paid for several moths.
Further comments were made by team’s sports director Vitoldas Masalskis, who said that four players might leave the team until the end of this week unless situation is controlled. Comparison to a recent financial trouble at Khimki was used.
It’s worth adding that statements made by Romanov should be taken with a grain of salt. The fact that a new player was signed the next day after public comments regarding club’s dire financial situation speaks for itself.