( 4UMF NEWS ) Matt Barnes Signs With Clippers:
The Los Angeles Clippers signed free-agent forward Matt Barnes, the team announced Friday.
Sources told ESPNLosAngeles.com’s Ramona Shelburne that Barnes received a one-year deal at the veteran minimum of approximately $1.2 million.
Barnes, 32, averaged 7.8 points and 5.5 rebounds in 63 games for the Los Angeles Lakers last season, his second with the team. But he never was fully healthy with the Lakers. Barnes had knee surgery during the middle of the 2011 season, then suffered an ankle injury midway through the 2012 season and a freak neck injury later that affected his performance.
The nine-year NBA veteran has averaged 7.3 points, 4.5 rebounds and 21.3 minutes during his career. This marks Barnes’ second stint with the Clippers. After signing with Los Angeles as a free agent rookie in 2003-04, he averaged 4.5 points, 4.0 rebounds and 19.1 minutes in 38 games played that season. The expected signing of Barnes caps a productive summer for the Clippers, who added veterans Jamal Crawford, Grant Hill, Ronny Turiaf and Ryan Hollins through free agency, re-signed Chauncey Billups and agreed to a contract extension with Blake Griffin. Billups, Griffin and point guard Chris Paul were all involved in recruiting Barnes, who had interest from the Miami Heat, among others.
Barnes turned in his most productive NBA campaign with the Phoenix Suns during the 2008-09 season when he played with Hill. In 77 games played with the Suns, Barnes averaged a career-high 10.2 points, 5.5 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 27.0 minutes per game.
Barnes originally was drafted in the second round of the 2002 NBA draft by the Memphis Grizzlies but was traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers prior to the start of his rookie season. After being waived by the Cavs during training camp, Barnes played 50 games for Fayetteville of the NBA D-League, averaging 9.7 points and 3.3 rebounds during the 2002 season.