Guard would be first Japanese-born player
PHOENIX -- The Phoenix Suns signed Japanese guard Yuta Tabuse on Tuesday.
Tabuse, who was waived after spending training camp with the Denver Nuggets last year, hopes to become the first Japanese-born player to make the NBA. He appeared in three games with the Nuggets in the preseason, averaging 3.0 points and 2.7 assists in 7.3 minutes.
"He has a great feel for the game and pushes the ball up the floor extremely well. He really has the ability to electrify an audience," said Bryan Colangelo, Suns president and general manager.
The Yokohama, Japan, native participated in two summer leagues for the Suns.
Tabuse said in a news conference in Tokyo that he was pleased at the opportunity to make the team.
"I am very happy that I was able to sign. But as I said, this is just the starting line, and I know that this is the real beginning. I would like to continue to stay focused," Tabuse said.
The 5-foot-9 Tabuse played two seasons at Brigham Young-Hawaii, and he doesn't consider his height to be a disadvantage.
"I've been playing basketball all my life with guys bigger than myself, and I'm used to that," Tabuse said.
Tabuse, 23, was scheduled to arrive in Phoenix next week.
Japan's Yasutaka Okayama was drafted by the Golden State Warriors in 1981, but didn't join the team.
Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press
MORE NBA HEADLINES
- Brooks: Durant could be scoring even more
- Harden scores 41, rallies Rockets for OT win
- Noah, Augustin lead Bulls over Heat in OT
- Meeks erupts for 42 as Lakers stun Thunder
MOST SENT STORIES ON ESPN.COM
- adidas Youth Phoenix Suns climawarm Black 3-Stripe Pullover Hoodie
- NBA Home
- Boston Celtics
- Brooklyn Nets
- New York Knicks
- Philadelphia 76ers
- Toronto Raptors
- Chicago Bulls
- Cleveland Cavaliers
- Detroit Pistons
- Indiana Pacers
- Milwaukee Bucks
- Atlanta Hawks
- Charlotte Bobcats
- Miami Heat
- Orlando Magic
- Washington Wizards
- Heat Index