Paul happy deal keeps him in N.O.
|||Brand likes spirit of 76ers|
NEW ORLEANS — If Chris Paul had any regrets about last season, it was how his rising stardom made fans in New Orleans a little paranoid they might lose him to a wealthier team in a bigger city.
Paul said he constantly ran into fans who were aware he had only one season left on his rookie contract and told him, "We hope you don't leave."
"I truly love this city, everything about it," Paul said. "I never had any plans to leave, contrary to what people may have believed."
Those who hoped the All-Star point guard would remain with the Hornets can relax now.
New Orleans formally announced Paul's contract extension yesterday, the first day under NBA rules teams were allowed to publicly discuss offseason roster moves.
Citing team policies, the Hornets did not disclose terms of the deal, but Paul's agent, Lance Young, said when the deal was verbally agreed upon last week that the extension, which takes effect in the 2009-10 season, is for at least three seasons with a player's option for a fourth. Should Paul remain in New Orleans all four years, the total value of the contract would be about $68 million, Young said.
Last season, Paul led the NBA with averages of 11.6 assists and 2.7 steals. He was the Hornets' second-leading scorer at 21.1 points per game and helped the Hornets win a franchise-record 56 regular-season games.
Derrick Rose has had a rough summer league. Now it might be over.
The Chicago Bulls held their No. 1 overall pick out of yesterday's game with tendinitis in his right knee. It was the third of five games the Bulls and five other teams are playing over five days in Orlando.
Rose said the injury, which dates to his college days at Memphis, wasn't serious and he fought for court time.
"I was mad today, but I knew they weren't going to play me so I was just going to have to suck it up," Rose said after Chicago's 86-74 win over Orlando. "I could have played, but they said, 'Don't worry about it, this is just the summer.' "
Kings: Sacramento re-signed point guard Beno Udrih yesterday, keeping Mike Bibby's successor with a five-year deal. Udrih joined the Kings last Nov. 1 after three years with the San Antonio Spurs, who traded him to Minnesota. After the Timberwolves waived him the same day, Udrih signed with Sacramento to fill in for Bibby, who was out with a thumb injury.
Heat: Throughout his NBA career, James Jones has always thought of the Miami Heat as his team. And now, it finally is.
The South Florida native signed a five-year contract yesterday with the Heat, one that will pay him $4 million next season and could be worth more than $23 million over the life of the deal.
Knicks: Chris Duhon is coming to compete for the New York Knicks' starting point guard job.
Duhon signed a two-year deal yesterday worth more than $11 million, choosing the Knicks over the Orlando Magic because of an opportunity to play in new coach Mike D'Antoni's system — perhaps as the starter.
Mavericks: DeSagana Diop signed a five-year, $31 million deal with Dallas yesterday, six months after the Mavericks sent him to New Jersey in the Jason Kidd trade.
Diop averaged 2.5 points and 5.1 rebounds in 214 games, including 72 starts, with Dallas.
Raptors: Toronto added six-time All-Star Jermaine O'Neal to its lineup yesterday in a multiplayer deal with Indiana that sent guard T.J. Ford and center Rasho Nesterovic to the Pacers. The teams agreed to the deal in principle before last month's draft, but it couldn't be officially announced until yesterday.
The Raptors also acquired the draft rights to forward Nathan Jawai while the Pacers received forward Maceo Baston and the draft rights to center Roy Hibbert.