Guard Jason Kidd, who is No. 1 in assists among active National Basketball Association players, agreed to join the New York Knicks, who will also match the Houston Rockets’ offer to Jeremy Lin.
Lin, who rose to prominence when he left the bench to take over the Knicks’ offense this year, has reached an agreement with Houston, which let him go from their crowded roster last season, according to the Associated Press. The New York Post reported today on its website that the Knicks will match the offer, which is their right under NBA rules.
The Rockets last season gave up Lin to keep Goran Dragic, who has reached a deal to return to the Phoenix Suns after they sent point guard Steve Nash to the Los Angeles Lakers. The Brooklyn Nets are still building with the addition of Mirza Teletovic, who made 43.1 percent of his three-point shots and averaged 21.7 points a game last season for Spanish team Caja Laboral.
None of the players can sign contracts, nor can team management officially comment on any deals until July 11.
Lin was offered a deal worth $10.2 million over the first two years and $9.3 million in the third year, AP reported last night, citing an unidentified person with knowledge of the deal. A team option on a fourth year is also worth $9.3 million, the report said.
The Knicks, who have said they would to keep Lin, have three days after July 11 to offer him a new contact. The Harvard graduate averaged 14.6 points and 6.2 assists in 35 games, including 25 starts, before his season ended because of surgery to repair torn knee cartilage.
Knicks spokesman Jonathan Supranowitz declined to comment in an e-mail. Rockets spokesman Nelson Luis didn’t respond to an e-mail seeking comment.
Kidd, 39, who has been with the 2011 NBA champion Dallas Mavericks since the 2007-08 season, started for the Nets when they lost in the NBA Finals in 2002 and 2003.
He has recorded 11,842 assists to hold second place on the all-time career list behind Hall of Famer John Stockton, who tallied 15,806 assists.
The Nets are trying to rebuild a team that may include Teletovic, 26, who will sign a three-year, $15 million contract under the midlevel exception, the New York Times said, citing people involved in the deal.
The Nets also agreed to acquire six-time NBA All-Star guard Joe Johnson and bring back point guard and Brooklyn native Deron Williams, who agreed to a five-year $98 million contract, ESPN reported. Three-time Defensive Player of the Year Dwight Howard remains a possibility to join the club, the network said.
Dragic agreed to a four-year, $30 million contract with the Suns who added incentives of $4 million, AP reported, citing a person with knowledge of the situation. The fourth year is a player option.
The Suns also reached a three-year, $18 million deal with free agent forward Michael Beasley, AP reported.
Nash, 38, will get a three-year contract worth more than $25 million from the Lakers, the Arizona Republic newspaper said. The Suns will receive 2013 and 2015 first-round picks, 2013 and 2014 second-round picks and $3.1 million, the report said.
Guard Jason Terry has verbally agreed to a three-year deal worth $5 million annually with the Boston Celtics, ESPN reported, citing unidentified people familiar with the negotiations.
Terry, 34, averaged 15.1 points and 3.6 assists per game last season for the Mavericks, where he’s played for eight seasons. He ranks fourth on the NBA’s all-time list with 1,788 3-pointers and in 2009 was named Sixth Man of the Year, awarded annually to the league’s best non-starter.
The Celtics also have offered Ray Allen $6.2 million, twice the amount the Miami Heat have to disburse, the Boston Globe reported. Still, the Heat are courting Allen, who is first in career all-time 3-point goals at 2,718.
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