Brazilian Center Nene Returns to Rockets

Nene with Brazil National Team. Photo by Sergio Lopez/BPI/REX/Shutterstock

Brazilian center Nene opted out of his contract with the Houston Rockets earlier this year, contemplating retirement or maybe playing somewhere else. As it turns out, neither will happen as the 36-year-old veteran ended up deciding against change of scenery.

According to The Athletic’s Kelly Iko, Nene plans to re-sign with the Rockets and will play the 2019/20 NBA season in Houston.

The interesting thing about Nene’s return is that he will earn less money than he would if he just opted into his contract. His option was worth around $3.8 million, while the new deal should reportedly net him $2.6 million. This will help the Rockets to stay under the luxury tax.

Back in May, Nene discussed his future with ESPN Brazil and hinted that he might be retiring.

“I’m going to talk to them [Rockets] after the season is over. But my time and my legacy is already ending. Everything I did, I did.” – said Nene at the time.

Nene played his statistically worst season since entering the NBA in 2018/19, mostly due to injuries. He appeared in 43 games, averaging 3.6 points and 2.4 rebounds per game.