Baron of New Orleans
Star guard Davis signs six-year extension with HornetsPosted: Tuesday July 30, 2002 11:28 AM
Updated: Tuesday July 30, 2002 10:50 PM
NEW ORLEANS (AP) -- Baron Davis is sticking with the Hornets after all, signing a contract that will bring him to New Orleans for the next seven years.
Hornets executive vice president Bob Bass said Tuesday the contract adds six years to the one year left on Davis' previous deal.
The team, which recently moved from Charlotte, reportedly had offered Davis an $84 million package. While not confirming the compensation details, Bass said Davis would earn an annual salary equal to about 25 percent of the NBA team salary cap. The cap is $40.271 million for the 2002-03 season and is adjusted annually.
Bass called the agreement "a terrific long-term commitment to the city of New Orleans."
"Our owners' intention is to sign the best possible players and bring the best possible team to New Orleans," Bass said.
Earlier this month, the All-Star guard said he was weighing what direction the team was headed, and wanted to find out more about New Orleans.
"I'm looking forward to starting a new winning tradition here in New Orleans," Davis said in a prepared statement. "We have a great team and a great chance to build on our success. So I hope the fans and the city are as excited as I am."
But Davis' agent, Jerome Stanley, told Sports Illustrated's Marty Burns, "It was never a New Orleans thing. It was a question of 'Do you want to commit to seven years? Do you want to explore and then make a decision? After thinking about it for quite a while, he's come to the conclusion that it is in his best interests to go ahead and make a commitment."
Davis averaged 18.1 points, 8.5 assists and 4.3 rebounds last season. Team co-owner George Shinn said the contract "solidifies our team for years to come since he's already an All-Star at the young age of 23."
Coach Paul Silas said Davis had shown "maturity and leadership on and off the court."
"We can't wait to show our fans in New Orleans what a quality team we have as we continue to make strides and contend for a championship," Silas said.
Stanley denied that Monday's announcement of a Clippers trade for Andre
Miller necessarily precipitated Davis' decision to re-sign the following day:
"That's not the case," said Stanley. "... [But] it is pretty ironic, isn't it? ... I know from Baron's standpoint, it
The Associated Press contributed to this report.