Thursday, July 5, 2012

Latest NBA signings and trades

PHOENIX (AP) -- Steve Nash is going to the Los Angeles Lakers, a Pacific Division rival the two-time MVP point guard tried so hard to beat, with little success, in his eight seasons with the Phoenix Suns.

At Nash's request, the Lakers and Suns reached a sign-and-trade deal, with Los Angeles using the trade exception it got when it sent Lamar Odom to Dallas to facilitate the transaction.

The 38-year-old Nash, who spent the past eight seasons with the Suns, was a free agent but a sign-and-trade agreement was necessary for the Lakers to afford him. He agreed to a three-year, $27 million contract. In return, the Suns get four draft picks - first rounders in 2013 and 2015 and second rounders in 2013 and 2014.

Nash's agent Bill Duffy said the deal was finalized Wednesday about 6 p.m., PDT.

In a statement released by the agent, Nash said that after he and the Suns agreed to part ways, he re-approached them to ask to pursue a sign-and-trade deal with Los Angeles "because it is very important to me to stay near my children and family," who live in Phoenix.

"They were very apprehensive and didn't want to do it," Nash said. "Fortunately for me, they reconsidered. They saw that they were able to get assets for their team that will make them better, assets they would not have otherwise had and it made sense for them to do a deal that helps their team get better."

There had been sign-and-trade talks with New York and a lucrative free agent offer from Toronto.

The deal will put Nash on the floor with the team he tried so hard to unseat as a Western Conference power, teaming him with Kobe Bryant, Andrew Bynum and at least for now, Pau Gasol.

The Suns at least get something in the loss of their longtime leader and one of the city's most popular athletes, although no one to help immediately, unless some or all of the picks are used in future trades.

Nash's Phoenix teammate Jared Dudley tweeted that Nash "has not only been the best but the most unselfish player I ever played with. I only wish him the best. He deserves everything. Steve Nash has made many players millions. Only fitting to trade to a team that has a chance to win the ship and pay what he deserves."

Nash has never made it to the NBA Finals. He was last in the Western Conference finals against the Lakers in 2010, when the Suns lost in six games and Los Angeles went on to win the NBA title.

The sign-and-trade agreement first was reported by sports personality John Gambadoro of KTAR radio.


NEW YORK (AP) -- Deron Williams is moving to Brooklyn with the Nets, instead of back home to Dallas.

The All-Star point guard said on his Twitter page Tuesday night that he "made a very tough decision today" and posted a picture of the Nets' new team logo that accompanies their move from New Jersey to Brooklyn.

A person with knowledge of the decision said Williams told the team he was accepting their five-year contract worth $98 million. The person confirmed the agreement on condition of anonymity because contracts can't be signed until July 11.

Williams, the top free agent available, chose to stay with the Nets over signing with the Mavericks, who hoped they could convince him to come back to the area where he grew up.

It's a huge triumph for the Nets as they prepare to move into the new Barclays Center to start the 2012-13 season. They gave up an enormous package to get Williams in a surprising February 2011 trade, sending promising forward Derrick Favors, point guard Devin Harris, two first-round draft picks and cash to the Utah Jazz.

But it was worth it for the Nets, who needed a franchise player with them to build buzz for their move to New York.

Williams wanted to make a quick decision before he reports to training camp in Las Vegas with the U.S. men's basketball team on Thursday. He met with both teams Monday, the day after free agency opened, and made his Twitter posting at about 7 p.m. ET.

Williams' decision comes a day after the Nets agreed to a deal with Atlanta for All-Star guard Joe Johnson, and amid reports they are still hoping to make a deal with Orlando for Dwight Howard. Brooklyn also has a deal in place to re-sign versatile free agent forward Gerald Wallace.


The Boston Celtics have reached agreement with Dallas Mavericks free-agent guard Jason Terry on a three-year contract, league sources told Yahoo! Sports.

The Celtics will use their $5 million mid-level exception to sign Terry. The total value of the contract will be $15.6 million.

Terry spoke with Celtics president Danny Ainge and coach Doc Rivers on the first day of free agency Sunday. Rivers told Yahoo! Sports he hopes Boston can still re-sign Ray Allen, in addition to adding Terry. The Celtics have also already reached agreement with Kevin Garnett on a three-year, $34 million contract.

Free agents can sign contracts on July 11.

Terry averaged 15.1 points and 3.6 assists while shooting 37.8 percent from 3-point range last season for Dallas. Terry, 34, often expressed frustration about not being signed to a contract extension after being a key member of the Mavericks' 2011 NBA championship team.


The Oklahoma City Thunder have agreed to center Hasheem Thabeet to a two-year deal, a league source told Yahoo! Sports.

Thabeet has had a disappointing career since being drafted by the Memphis Grizzlies second overall in 2009. He's played sparingly and spent time in the NBA's Developmental League. Thabeet will be joining his fourth team after playing for the Houston Rockets and Portland Trail Blazers last season.

Thabeet has averaged 2.2 points, 2.6 rebounds and 0.9 blocks in his NBA career. Free agents can begin signing contracts on July 11.

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