Forward Drew Gooden has committed to sign with the San Antonio Spurs after he clears waivers on Wednesday morning, two league executives said Tuesday evening.
Gooden was released by the Sacramento Kings late Sunday, making him eligible to play for another team during the playoffs. The Spurs expect to sign Gooden for about $1.5 million, the remainder of their midlevel exception. The contract keeps the team below the NBA’s luxury-tax threshold.
Gooden’s imminent signing comes also comes as the Cleveland Cavaliers have reached agreement with forward Joe Smith, an Eastern Conference executive said.
Gooden averaged 13.1 points and 8.6 rebounds in 31 games with the Chicago Bulls before he was traded to the Kings on Feb. 18. The Kings reached a buyout agreement with Gooden which saved the franchise about $1.8 million.
Gooden has recently battled a groin injury, but the Spurs are comfortable with giving him as much time as needed to heal in hopes he’ll be ready for the playoffs. Spurs officials, who have looked for frontcourt help and tried to trade for Los Angeles Clippers Center Marcus Camby, envision Gooden as a backup to Matt Bonner.