The 30-year-old has been in imperious form for the Amlin Challenge Cup finalists and is widely regarded as the best man to understudy Dan Carter in the All Blacks' World Cup squad.
But the New Zealand Rugby Union's rules prevent All Blacks coach Graham Henry from selecting any overseas-based players, for fear it would spark an exodus.
Evans was fully aware of the situation when he moved to Harlequins in 2007 and, more pertinently, when he signed a new two-year contract extension last summer.
"I knew the rules. The opportunity to go back would have been great but what do I do then? All of a sudden I would be competing for the same spots with everyone else," said Evans.
"I caught up with Graham and (NZRU chief executive) Steve Tew when they were over. We had a chat and a laugh about it.
"It is the life of a professional sportsman that money drives a lot the way you think. We are not bankers, we can't be bankers until we are 65 and earn ridiculous amounts of money.
"We have got until we are 35 or 36 if we are lucky. That is it. We go from the top of our game to the bottom with everyone else. We have to look after ourselves.
"I had played 16 Tests and been to a World Cup. I had ticked all the boxes I wanted to with the All Blacks.
"Looking back I felt I had played as well as I could and I didn't have any regrets I had left anything behind."
When Evans signed for Harlequins he was part of the flood of established overseas stars that joined Aviva Premiership clubs after the 2007 Rugby World Cup.
The likes of Chris Jack, Luke McAlister, Aaron Mauger and Butch James all signed lucrative contracts when the pound was strong, before the credit crunch bit.
That wave of top talent has turned into a trickle with clubs in France and Japan now able to offer more attractive packages, based on bigger wages and fewer matches.
"You won't see as many people coming here with the money and the amount of games you play," said Evans.
"It is easy when you get thrown a lot of money in France and Japan, and where you dont play as many games. The Premiership can chew you up and spit you out pretty easily."
Harlequins tackle star-studded Stade Francais side in the Amlin Challenge Cup final in Cardiff on Friday, a club with a budget that dwarfs the Premiership's £4million salary cap.
But Quins director of rugby Conor O'Shea insisted today that "money doesn't buy you everything".
Racing Metro could not tempt Ugo Monye away from Harlequins in the summer while Evans' influence at Harlequins has been invaluable since moving to The Stoop.
"I had the impression that no matter how well I played I wasn't going to start Tests in front of Dan (Carter), which is fine because he is the best in the world," said Evans.
"I didn't want to rest on my laurels and pick up my pay packet, I wanted to challenge myself in the hardest competition in Europe. That is reflected in the way I have played these last three seasons.
"I am happy with what I earn but it was more than that for me. It is a challenge I thoroughly enjoy, playing tough teams week in and week out.
"I enjoy Quins, I enjoy London and I feel I play well here. I definitely don't regret it."
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