• Kyodo

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Japanese guard Motohiro Fujino has sealed a contract with a professional basketball team based in Harlem, N.Y., that will open its inaugural season in the American Basketball Association this fall, team sources said Thursday.

The 23-year-old former Waseda University student is the first player who signed with the new team that will hold tryouts before it officially joins the independent minor league as part of ABA’s expansion plan when the season kicks off in November.

The team, owned by Wray Wade who has high school coaching experience in Japan, has yet to be named. Yuta Tabuse played with Long Beach Jam in the ABA last season.

Tabuse missed out on a chance to become the first Japanese player in the National Basketball Association despite being named to the preseason roster of the Denver Nuggets last October.

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