Al’s ‘Terrific’ Debut for Xinjiang On Hold

A medical issue has delayed Al Jefferson’s debut with the Xinjiang Flying Tigers.

After recently undergoing an emergency dental procedure in the U.S., Big Al landed in China this week hoping to still get a chance to play his first game for the  Flying Tigers in the Terrific 12 Tournament.

But the delay in his arrival, combined with the need for further medical examination, has put a halt on his awaited premiere. Xinjiang coach Brian Goorjian explained the delay to the Tiebreaker Times:

“He was supposed to be here earlier to get ready for the tournament. He had a health complication which brought him in later,” said Brian Goorjian. “Then before he suits up, he has to have a physical. So as we were playing, he was having his physical.”

The Flying Tigers lost their first game of the tournament on Wednesday night, 74-59 to a team from Japan, the Ryukyu Golden Kings. They are set to play again on Thursday against the iECO Green Warriors from the Philippines. But Goorjian told Justine Bacnis of the TBT that is unlikely Al sees action in that game either.

“I don’t think we’ll play him tomorrow,” he said. “We got one game left but it’s probably not a good idea.”

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