Charlotte agrees to terms with Lance Stephenson
The Indiana free-agent shooting guard fills need for Hornets.
Seattle Times news services
LAS VEGAS — Following an all-night negotiating session, the Charlotte Hornets have come to an agreement to sign Indiana Pacers shooting guard Lance Stephenson.
Under terms of the agreement, Stephenson will make $9 million in 2014-15 and $9 million in 2015-16. Stephenson will get a slight raise in 2016-17 if the Hornets pick up the team option.
Stephenson fills an obvious need, as the Hornets were weak offensively at the shooting guard and small forward positions. The 6-foot-5 playmaker had a breakthrough season statistically, averaging 13.8 points, 7.2 rebounds and 4.7 assists. He shot 49 percent from the field and 35 percent from three-point range.
However, he has a quirky personality that seems to have limited his market when he became an unrestricted free agent July 1.
The Pacers offered Stephenson $44 million over five seasons, and reportedly did not come off that number. Stephenson thought he was worth considerably more.
Wednesday, Stephenson tweeted:
“Indy, I had a great 4 years. Thank you Larry Bird, the fans, my coaches and teammates for the incredible experience. I will never forget any of you! I now have to look to the next phase of my career and the wonderful opportunity to continue to grow as a player and as a person in Charlotte! I’m excited to play for this franchise and the fans!! #buzzcity”
Meanwhile, a person with knowledge of the situation tells The Associated Press that the Pacers have agreed to terms with free agent-guard Rodney Stuckey, the former Kentwood High and Eastern Washington standout, on a one-year deal to help replace Stephenson.
Stuckey averaged 13.9 points last season, his seventh season with the Detroit Pistons.
• Brandon Rush and the Golden State Warriors are headed for a reunion.
Rush and the Warriors agreed to a two-year, $2.5 million contract. Rush’s agent, Mark Bartelstein, said the small forward will hold the option in the second year of the deal.
Rush was Golden State’s top reserve and best perimeter defender during the 2011-12 season before tearing the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee in the team’s 2012-13 home opener. He was traded to Utah last summer as part of a salary shedding move that allowed the Warriors to sign Andre Iguodala away from Denver.
• The Cavaliers agreed to a one-year contract with veteran wing James Jones, a league source told the Akron Beacon Journal. The deal is worth the league minimum.
• A person with knowledge of the deal tells The Associated Press that forward Ed Davis has agreed to terms on a two-year, $2 million contract with the Los Angeles Lakers.
• Two people with knowledge of the situation say free agent Anthony Tolliver has agreed to a two-year, $6 million contract with Phoenix.
• The Orlando Magic is finalizing an agreement with free-agent point guard Luke Ridnour, sources told ESPN.com.
Ridnour, the former Blaine High and Oregon star, averaged 5.0 points and 2.9 assists while splitting 61 games with Milwaukee and Charlotte last season.