There’s been a lot of movement in the NBA this week, as teams begin talking to free agents as well as re-signing players. So far, Joe Johnson has joined the Brooklyn Nets alongside Deron Williams who will re-up with the team with a $100 million contract; Steve Nash is signing with the Los Angeles Lakers; and Blake Griffin has signed an extension with the L.A. Clippers, who have also picked up Lamar Odom.
As far as the status of Dwight Howard, that’s still in the air. But word is, Orlando is in talks with several teams, looking for the right situation.
New movement in the past day includes moves made by the New York Knicks, the Magic, the Clips, and Toronto Raptors.
Jason Kidd is saying good bye to the Dallas Mavs, following his first NBA title in 2011, and is headed to the New York Knicks. According to ESPN.com, the 39-year-old guard will sign a three-year deal worth $9 million.
Kidd told the network that he thinks he “can help” the Knicks, and added that he felt the team had more “pieces to work with” than the Mavs. He averaged 6.2 points and 5.5 assists last season, his 18th in the NBA. Kidd ranks second all-time with 11,842 assists, trailing only John Stockton (15,806).
Out in Los Angeles, the Clippers have ceased talks with Boston vet Ray Allen, and re-signed Chauncey Billups and added Jamal Crawford.
Billups, who played 20 games with the Clippers last season before injuring his Achilles’ heel, is signing a one-year deal, sources said, worth around $4.3 million. Crawford, who opted out of the last year of his deal with the Trail Blazers, will get a four-year deal for between $21 million and $25 million, said ESPN. The L.A. Times, however, reported that it would be a three-year deal for $15.7 million. Stay tuned…
With Billups, the team has options at both backcourt spots. He played out of position at shooting guard at the beginning of last season and was successful, but after his injury, another point guard, Mo Williams, stepped in to fill the spot. Crawford gives the Clips a traditional shooting guard.
Up top, in Toronto, the Raptors have acquired guard Kyle Lowry from the Houston Rockets in exchange for forward Gary Forbes and a protected future first-round draft pick. Lowry is a seventh-year pro, who averaged 14.3 points and 6.6 assists per games last year for the Rockets. He is a versatile guard, one the Raptors could use after losing their pursuit for Steve Nash to the Lakers.
The Magic continue to look for trade options for Dwight Howard, and are trying to solidify some of their roster for next season. The team has agreed to a new deal with point guard Jameer Nelson.
The 30-year-old announced the news on his Twitter account (@jameernelson) Thursday (July 5), after opting out of the final season and nearly $8 million of his contract to test free agency. Details were unknown at press time.
The Minnesota Timberwolves have made some moves. They’ve reportedly agreed to a two-year deal with guard Brandon Roy who decided to make a return following a brief retirement. According to NBA.com, the deal is worth $10.4 million. Roy picked the T-Wolves over offers from Dallas, Indiana, Golden State and Cleveland.
Under the new amnesty rules, Roy could not re-sign with Portland even if he wanted to until the 2014-15 season, because the Trail Blazers were the team that waived him last December under the new amnesty provisions of the Collective Bargaining Agreement. Portland had to pay the remaining $63 million of Roy’s salary. After no one claimed Roy off waivers, he became an unrestricted free agent.
Possibly joining Roy in Minnesota is his old Blazers teammate Nicolas Batum, who has agreed to terms on a four-year, $45 million deal with bonuses that could make the deal worth more than $50 million. The move isn’t set in stone though.
As a restricted free agent, the Blazers can match any offer made to Batum. But his agent told the Associated Press on Thursday night that Batum is hoping Portland doesn’t match Minnesota’s offer or executes a sign and trade to get him to his preferred destination.
After trading Nash, the Phoenix Suns has agreed to a four-year deal with free agent point guard Goran Dragic, worth $30 million contract with the final year a player option.
And finally, in Boston, while Ray Allen considers leaving, the team has added some new pieces to the roster. Celtics general manager Danny Ainge has recruited former Dallas Mavericks shooting guard Jason Terry to a three-year deal for $15 million, and has another three-year contract for forward Brandon Bass.
Stay tuned for more NBA trades…