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John Salley Says NBA Should Give Players A Car, Apartment, Chaperone, And Security Like In Europe


John Salley had claimed in the past that the NBA should be giving its players some additional benefits along with the salaries. Salley had stated that the league should provide a car, apartment, chaperone, and security to players, as these benefits are provided when playing in Europe. During an appearance on Vlad TV, Salley was asked about those comments, and his stance on the matter has not changed.

That is an interesting suggestion from Salley, but I’m not sure if the NBA would ever give all those benefits to all the players. It’s a bit too much to ask of the league and I’m not completely sure here, but I doubt every player in Europe gets them, either.

It might be for a chosen few and for those who go there from the U.S., as Salley did when he joined Panathinaikos in Greece in 1996. You would get the teams giving these players all these benefits to get them to come over and also to stick around instead of leaving in a year or so.


Dominique Wilkins Lived In A House With Golden Toilets In Greece

Right before Salley headed to Greece to play for Panathinaikos, Dominique Wilkins had played for them in the 1995-96 season. During his appearance on Vlad TV last year, Wilkins shared just how well Panathinaikos treated him when he arrived.

“It was just one of the most breathtaking moments I’ve ever had as a player to be treated the way I was treated in Greece,” Wilkins said. “They gave you the world and so I was like, ‘How can I turn this down?’ And I was the highest-paid guy in Europe at that time, soccer or basketball. So, it was just a offer I couldn’t refuse.”

It was just too good of a deal for Wilkins to turn down, as he had got a two-year, $7 million contract. He stated he didn’t have to pay for anything in Greece either as the team took care of everything. Vlad then asked Wilkins whether the house he was provided with actually had gold toilets.

“Something like that,” Wilkins responded. “I had kitchen on every four floors, all marble, 14 karat gold, it was a stupid house.”

(starts at 0:43 mark):

As you can see, a European team would give all these benefits to an American player as that is what it would take to get them to turn down the NBA and come over. A big fat contract and all these benefits meant he would have been foolish to turn them down.

Wilkins repaid Panathinaikos with some strong performances, and he helped them be crowned EuroLeague champions for the first time in their history in 1996. He was also awarded the Final Four MVP award and ended up averaging 20.1 points, 7.4 rebounds, and 1.8 assists per game in the EuroLeague that season.

Wilkins also took Panathinaikos to the final of the Greek Championship, but they lost that series 3-2 to their bitter rivals, Olympiacos. He didn’t play in Game 5 citing an injury, but the team didn’t believe he was hurt. That was the beginning of the end for Wilkins in Greece as the relationship completely fell apart.

Panathinaikos then terminated the second year of his deal to get out of having to pay him a huge sum. Wilkins would get his money, however, as he won a court case on the matter. He would return to the U.S. in 1996 and signed with the San Antonio Spurs to continue his NBA career.

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