Tyreke Evans has been reinstated by the NBA after a two-year ban caused by his violation of the NBA/NBPA's anti-drug program, the league announced on Monday. Evans will be eligible to sign with a new team as soon as Friday, should interest in his services exist. The former No. 4 overall pick was the 2009-10 Rookie of the Year in a class that included future superstars Stephen Curry and James Harden.
His career never quite reached the heights of that stellar rookie season again, though. His scoring declined in each of his subsequent seasons with the Sacramento Kings before he joined the New Orleans Pelicans and injuries bit a chunk out of his prime. He was able to resurrect his career with a surprisingly strong stint in Memphis, but after leaving the Grizzlies for the Pacers he posted the worst season of his career. He shot below 39 percent from the field in his lone season in Indiana and was suspended after that.
Now Evans, 32, will presumably attempt to return to the league and recapture some of the scoring and playmaking success that made him one of the best young players in the NBA. He has been working out in Miami with John Wall and Michael Beasley, according to Marc Stein, and with teams mulling possible additions on the buyout market, Evans could get a look from a contender interested in taking a high-risk, high-reward swing.
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Of course, such teams wouldn't be asking Evans to run their offense as the Kings once did. After two years away, their hope would likely be that Evans could slide into more of a 3-and-D role with some supplementary playmaking as a bonus. If he is willing and able to do that, he should have no problem carving out a place for himself in the NBA even after his extended absence.