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View Full Version : Udoka's next stop? Looks like the Spurs


George Gervin
08-13-2007, 07:12 AM
Ime Udoka, whose rise from the NBA Development League to NBA starter made him a fan favorite with the Trail Blazers, is poised to sign a multiyear contract with the reigning-champion San Antonio Spurs.

Udoka's agent, Erin Cowan, told The Oregonian on Sunday that Udoka has made a commitment to the Spurs and hoped to have a deal finalized by Tuesday.

Cowan would not reveal contract specifics, but sources have indicated that Udoka will sign a two-year deal worth more than $2 million. The second year could be a player option.

"San Antonio was the first team to contact us and we've been in communication with each other ever since," Cowan said. "They were very respectful to us during the process and allowed us to go out and seek more money. But the well dried up. Ime's excited for this opportunity."

Udoka had hoped throughout free agency to re-sign with Portland, Cowan said. But after the Blazers traded for James Jones and signed free agents Travis Outlaw and Steve Blake, the team had committed to the maximum of 15 guaranteed contracts. So he shifted focus.

Boston, Miami, Memphis, Cleveland and Dallas expressed interest, according to Cowan, with the Celtics -- after trading for Kevin Garnett earlier this month -- being the most serious bidders.

But financial terms never could be agreed upon and in the end, San Antonio became the ideal fit.

"This is an opportunity for Ime to play on the grand stage with the defending champions," Cowan said. "Portland will always be in his heart, but this opportunity was too good to pass up. He's going to play around three all-stars and a Hall of Famer, and he gets the opportunity to play for a champion right now."

Udoka, who played at Jefferson High School and Portland State, will provide San Antonio with solid long-range shooting, superior perimeter defense and a tireless work ethic.

The Blazers invited him to their training camp last season as an afterthought, but he blossomed into an opening-day starter. He started 75 games at small forward, averaging 8.4 points, 3.7 rebounds and 1.5 assists per game, and shot 46.1 percent from the field, including 40.6 percent from three-point range.

Before the breakout season, Udoka was a journeyman, making professional stops in Europe, the NBA Development League and the NBA.

"He's excited to start the next phase of his career," Cowan said. "He wants to be a Spur for a long time."

Underdog
08-13-2007, 07:27 AM
Boston, Miami, Memphis, Cleveland and Dallas expressed interest


This just in: Dallas, Boston, Miami, and Cleveland are interested in EVERY free agent! :rolleyes:

George Gervin
08-13-2007, 07:36 AM
This just in: Dallas, Boston, Miami, and Cleveland are interested in EVERY free agent! :rolleyes:


That's kind of what I got out of it. It sounds as though none of these teams wants to spend much money.

MavsFanFinley
08-13-2007, 09:37 AM
I wondered what the holdup was. This was reported about a month ago and there was a lot speculation why he hadn't signed yet. It's a great deal for the Spurs when you consider what some of the other players got.

Scary to think the Spurs could throw out Bowen and Udoka out there at the same time.

Wonder if Barry and/or Beno are on the way out now?

Dirkgreatness
08-13-2007, 10:02 AM
Bowen's replacement?

Great signing for the Spurs.

DelNegro
08-13-2007, 10:18 AM
I wondered what the holdup was. This was reported about a month ago and there was a lot speculation why he hadn't signed yet. It's a great deal for the Spurs when you consider what some of the other players got.

Scary to think the Spurs could throw out Bowen and Udoka out there at the same time.

Wonder if Barry and/or Beno are on the way out now?

I think Barry's safe. He played well last year and I think the Spurs like having his expiring contract around so that it can drop off the books next year and give them breathing room against the luxury tax. Beno on the other hand I think they definitely want to move, but only if they can send him somewhere without taking payroll in return.

Duncan, Bowen and Udoka on the floor at the same time does make for a pretty stout defensive lineup.

chumdawg
08-13-2007, 10:28 AM
Damnit, I was hoping the Mavs would pick up this young stud in the making.

alby
08-13-2007, 10:48 AM
This franchise is so freaking solid. It really makes me sick. Solid vets. Solid pickups. 4 time world champs. Middle of the pack salary. Best coach in the game. Best winner in the game.

Sigh

ty
08-13-2007, 10:50 AM
This franchise is so freaking solid. It really makes me sick. Solid vets. Solid pickups. 4 time world champs. Middle of the pack salary. Best coach in the game. Best winner in the game.

Sigh

Sigh.

a.weidner
08-13-2007, 12:50 PM
Damnit, I was hoping the Mavs would pick up this young stud in the making.

Young? You realise he's 30 years old, don't you?

a.weidner
08-13-2007, 12:55 PM
here's an old post of mine from a couple months back, pointing out some interesting similarities between Bell and Udoka:


Ime Udoka. I have brought this guy up before. Has anyone seen him play? I'd love to have that guy on the bench. Has not a lot of upside, since he is already 29 years old. But apparently he can make threes (top 20 in 3pt%) and according to an article I found, he "impressed the coaching staff with his defense and professionalism". I'd like him on our bench maybe spelling Shane Battier or Raja Bell for 15, 20 min a game. I'd prefere him over Ross, since Udoka seems to be quite a bit stronger (220 lbs. to Ross' 193 lbs.). I'd absolutely love to have a stronger guard on the bench who can play D and and also sink threes at a high clip.

Raja Bell
undrafted
6-5 210 lbs.
first two season, he seems like a scrub. Not much of a shooter.
Then he has his breakout season in terms of shooting percentages: .441 FG% and .412 3p%

Ime Udoka
Undrafted
6-5 220 lbs.
first two season are terrible shooting wise.
This season: .461 FG% and .406 3P%

chumdawg
08-13-2007, 02:40 PM
Young? You realise he's 30 years old, don't you?Haven't you seen all these old guys coming out of retirement? Hell, he's got a good ten years left!

Regardless, he's NBA young...and rising.

alby
08-14-2007, 06:59 AM
bowen didn't become a starter until he was 30.

Dirkenstien
08-14-2007, 01:57 PM
Udoka can't touch Bowen when it comes to playing D.

DevinFuture
08-14-2007, 02:12 PM
Udoka can't touch Bowen when it comes to playing D.
Hardly anyone can.
But perhaps Udoka can learn something from him. It's kind of scary to think that the Spurs might be able to replace some of Bowen's defense for their future as Bowen grows too old.

slowmo
08-14-2007, 03:35 PM
Bowen only has to show him how to put his foot or hip under the other guy when he goes up for a rebound etc. The other thing is how to crawl into the other guys shorts when the refs are looking straight at you and not get a call. They think he is just being friendly. LOL