Rick Bonnell of The Charlotte Observer (hat tip: jayg108):
FIBA, basketball’s international governing body, recently declined to provide the NBA clearance to sign forward Bismack Biyombo, the Observer has learned. Biyombo, drafted seventh overall in June, is still under contract to a Spanish team and the Spanish Federation is enforcing that contract.
In an email reply to an Observer inquiry, FIBA spokesman Andrew Robotham wrote:
“The NBA has indeed requested a Letter of Clearance (LoC) for the Player Bismack Biyombo. In accordance with the NBA/FIBA Agreement, FIBA has contacted the Spanish Federation in order to obtain the LoC.
“However, the Spanish Basketball Federation refused to issue the LoC in view of the fact that the Player is still under contract with a team in Spain. ‘’
That Spanish team, Fuenlabrada, reportedly has Biyombo under contract for the next two seasons and expects a buyout of about $1.4 million to release Biyombo to the Bobcats.
I’m pretty glad the Bobcats took Biyombo before the Pistons could’ve. Leading up to the draft, like everyone else, I really liked Biyombo. But the buyout issue came out of nowhere, and that changes a lot. I think Jonas Valanciunas warrants waiting a year. Waiting two years for Biyombo? Not so much.