Jordan picks Mavericks over Clippers
LOS ANGELES — Lob City lost one of its most prominent residents Friday when free-agent center DeAndre Jordan agreed to leave the Los Angeles Clippers for the Dallas Mavericks, spurning the only NBA team he had known to begin a new chapter in his career.
Jordan committed to the Mavericks for four years and $80 million, with an opportunity to opt out after the third year, after being wowed by the team’s presentation this week and the relentless wooing of new teammates Dirk Nowitzki, Chandler Parsons and Wesley Matthews.
“We think he is going to be our best player for years to come,” Mavericks owner Mark Cuban triumphantly told reporters. “A franchise player for the rest of his career.”
Jordan, who turns 27 this month, cannot officially sign with Dallas until Thursday, when the league’s moratorium on formal commitments ends. His decision to join the Mavericks means he will return to the state where he was born and played collegiately at Texas A&M.
Jordan picking the Mavericks also signaled his desire to be more a focal point of his team’s offense and served as confirmation of his soured relationship with longtime Clippers teammate Chris Paul, who verbally belittled Jordan during one game last season and frantically yelled at him during another when Jordan failed to get off a shot in the final second.
Paul spoke with Jordan for about 25 minutes last weekend and corresponded with him again Monday, his efforts failing to sway Jordan to stay with the team.
One person close to Jordan said he was more impressed by the recruiting efforts of Nowitzki, who came off vacation to join the Mavericks contingent that held a dinner meeting with Jordan and later outlined its plans for him during a more formal 2½-hour presentation. No Clippers players attended the team’s pitch meeting Thursday.
Jordan, a second-round draft pick of the Clippers in 2008, ascended to NBA all-defensive first team last season and led the NBA in rebounding (15.0 per game) and field-goal percentage (.710).
RONDO, BELINELLI JOIN KINGS: The Sacramento Kings reached agreements with point guard Rajon Rondo and shooting guard Marco Belinelli, securing the two positions the team coveted most this summer.
Rondo's deal is for one year and $10 million, a person with direct knowledge of the agreement said. Belinelli's contract is for $19 million and three years, a second person familiar with that deal said.
Rondo, a four-time All-Star who is trying to recover from a brief but tumultuous tenure in Dallas, joins a franchise that has been one of the NBA's most chaotic recently.
The Kings fired two coaches last season, swiped decision-making power from general manager Pete D'Alessandro — who later left for a job in Denver's front office — and hired former franchise center Vlade Divac to oversee basketball operations.
New coach George Karl has yet to mesh with All-Star center DeMarcus Cousins, with several reported rifts already.
ROCKETS BRING BACK BREWER, BEVERLEY: Houston locked up two important role players from last year's team on Friday, reaching agreements with swingman Corey Brewer and point guard Patrick Beverley.
Beverley got a four-year deal worth $23.4 million, agent Kevin Bradbury said. The final year is non-guaranteed.
Brewer agreed to a three-year, $24 million deal, a person with knowledge of the deal told The Associated Press. The person requested anonymity because the deal has not been officially announced. The contracts cannot be signed until July 9.
Brewer averaged 11.9 points and 3.6 rebounds with the Rockets and was a key cog in their run to the Western Conference finals.
Beverley averaged 10.1 points and was an early-season candidate for defensive player of the year before missing the last three weeks of the regular season and the entire playoffs with an injured wrist.