Free-agent buzz: Warriors pursue Jordan
The Warriors had hoped to sign Dallas Mavericks free-agent center Tyson Chandler, but he is nearing a four-year, $58 million agreement with the New York Knicks. While the Warriors’ offer sheet wasn’t finalized, one source said the team is prepared to begin Jordan’s contract at $10 million next season.
Jordan has been offered a five-year, $40 million deal by the Clippers. The Clippers would have three days to match any offer sheet Jordan signs. Denver Nuggets free-agent center Nene hasn’t drawn much interest from the Warriors.
Butler joining Clippers
The San Antonio Spurs, Chicago Bulls and New Jersey Nets also targeted Butler, who will become the Clippers’ starting small forward. The chance to play with Blake Griffin appealed to Butler, along with the lucrative contract he’ll receive.
“He sees the Clippers with a more stable foundation of players,” one source familiar with Butler’s thinking told Yahoo! Sports this week.
Butler, 31, missed most of last season with a right knee injury that required surgery. He played just 29 games during the Dallas Mavericks’ run to the championship.
NBA.com first reported Butler’s signing.
Cavs to waive Davis?
Davis has $28.7 million left on the final two years of his contract, which would be removed from the Cavaliers’ salary cap under the amnesty clause. Davis would still be paid what he’s owed.
The Cavaliers also have the top pick in this year’s draft in point guard Kyrie Irving, who recently told Yahoo! Sports he would prefer to start his rookie season. Davis expects to attend the Cavs’ first day of practice Friday and be with the franchise until the team formally waives him.
“From all the reports and what my agent [Todd Ramasar] has been telling me, it’s possible,” Davis told Yahoo! Sports in early November about the prospect of being waived. “Even more possible considering where I’m at in my career with my age and my salary. I’m not going to turn a naked eye to it. I understand that. This is a business and teams are trying to do what’s best for them. Whatever comes my way, this is like a rebirth for me and an opportunity to start over and start new.
“I feel like I have a whole lot to prove and that I have a whole lot left in my game.”
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Once the Cavs use their amnesty clause on Davis, teams with room under the salary cap can bid on him. If Davis were to somehow clear waivers, he would likely be coveted by some contending teams. The Miami Heat have expressed interest in the 12-year veteran and the Knicks will need a point guard if, as expected, they waive or trade Chauncey Billups to sign center Tyson Chandler.
The Clippers traded Davis to the Cavs midway through last season. He averaged 13.9 points and 6.1 assists in 15 games in Cleveland.
Bucks to sign Dunleavy
Dunleavy, 31, has been slowed by knee problems in recent years, but averaged 11.2 points and 4.5 rebounds in 62 games for the Indiana Pacers last season. He spent the previous 4½ seasons with the Pacers after the Golden State Warriors made him the No. 3 overall pick in the 2002 NBA draft.
The Bucks used most of their midlevel exception to sign Dunleavy. Dunleavy’s father, Mike Sr., also previously played for and coached the Bucks.
Suns to sign Brown
Brown, 26, spent the past 2½ seasons with the Los Angeles Lakers, winning two championships with them. He averaged 8.7 points and 1.9 rebounds in 82 games last season.
Howard to follow Nene?
If Howard can’t join Nene, the San Antonio Spurs, Chicago Bulls, Utah Jazz and New Orleans Hornets have expressed interest in him. Howard visited with Wizards coach Flip Saunders at the team’s training facility Wednesday, but is not expected to re-sign with Washington.
Hill keeping options open
Grant Hill(notes) is comfortable re-signing with the Phoenix Suns to continue playing with close friend Steve Nash(notes). Suns president Lon Babby also is Hill’s former agent, and Hill’s family likes the Phoenix area.
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Yet a source close to Hill said the free-agent forward is continuing to explore his options. At 39 years old, Hill knows he doesn’t have long left to chase a championship, and the Los Angeles Lakers, Bulls, Miami Heat, Spurs, New York Knicks and Clippers have all expressed interest in him.
More free-agent chatter
Free agent forward Jason Collins will return to the Atlanta Hawks with a one-year deal, a league source told Yahoo! Sports. …Free-agent shooting guard Larry Hughes has accepted an invitation to the Orlando Magic’s training camp, a league source told Yahoo! Sports. Hughes, 32, last played in the NBA with the Charlotte Bobcats and New York Knicks during the 2009-10 season. Hughes says he’s healthy and spent last season in his hometown of St. Louis working with his charitable foundation. “I still have the passion to play,” he said. …Forward Jason Kapono(notes) intends to sign a one-year contract for the veteran’s minimum with the Lakers, a league source told Yahoo! Sports. Kapono met with Lakers officials on Monday. …Guard Roger Mason(notes) will sign with the Wizards, a league source confirmed to Yahoo! Sports. Mason played for the Knicks last season. …Guard T.J. Ford(notes) indicated he plans to sign with the Spurs. Ford spent the past three seasons with the Indiana Pacers, appearing in 41 games last season. Ford made no secret of his intentions Wednesday night when he tweeted, “SA SA SA SA.” …League sources confirmed an ESPN.com report that the Sacramento Kings have made a four-year, $21 million offer to free-agent forward Chuck Hayes(notes). The offer could be hard for the Modesto, Calif., native to pass on. Still, the Timberwolves are preparing their own offer for Hayes, who could decide between the two teams Thursday. Hayes has a strong relationship with new T’wolves coach Rick Adelman from their days together in Houston. …The Boston Celtics have asked free-agent forward Glen Davis(notes) to remain patient as they explore trade possibilities that could alter their roster. The Detroit Pistons, New Orleans Hornets and Orlando Magic also are interested, but a deal doesn’t appear imminent. …Philadelphia 76ers free-agent forward Thaddeus Young(notes) is still hopeful of re-signing with the team if he receives a fair offer. Young has a strong relationship with Sixers coach Doug Collins. The Celtics and Denver Nuggets are also interested in Young. …The Development League’s Los Angeles D-Fenders could lose point guard Jamaal Tinsley and as many as five other players to NBA camps, a league source said. Tinsley has drawn interest from the Heat, Atlanta Hawks and Knicks. D-Fenders forward Brian Hamilton(notes) will be going to the Pistons’ camp. …Undrafted former Fresno State center Greg Smith has committed to signing a make-good contract with the Houston Rockets, a league source said. Smith, 19, averaged 12.5 points and 7.3 rebounds in 25 games this season with Mexico Soles de Mexicali.
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