TRENTON, N.J. -- Vince Carter and the New Jersey Nets have
the framework in place for a four-year contract that guarantees the
All-Star more than $60 million, sources told The Associated Press and The (Newark) Star-Ledger.
The deal will not be official until July 11 when free-agent deals can be signed.
A day earlier the Nets announced Carter had opted out of the
final year of a contract that would've paid him $16.3 million next
season. Team officials, though, had said they were optimistic the
30-year-old swingman, who will be entering his 10th season, would
return to New Jersey.
Since the playoffs ended, Carter has been practicing at the
team's facility in East Rutherford, and he also had invited
teammate Nenad Krstic to visit his Orlando, Fla., home this week to
practice together. And Bruce Ratner, the team's owner, has been a
strong supporter of Carter and has said he wanted him re-signed.
Carter and the Nets had been talking about a contract for the
Gary Sussman, a team spokesman, did not immediately return a
message left Sunday night seeking details of the agreement.
However, The Star-Ledger reported on its Web site Sunday
that the deal guarantees Carter $61.8 million over four seasons,
with the team holding an option for a fifth year.
Kurt Schoeppler, Carter's agent, has not returned telephone
calls to his Cleveland office since the negotiations started, and
he did not return a message left Sunday.
Carter averaged team-highs of 25.2 points in the regular season
and 22.3 for the postseason. However, he shot less than 40 percent
from the field during the playoffs and made several big mistakes.
Carter turned the ball over in the closing seconds of Game 4 of
the Eastern Conference semifinal against Cleveland with the Nets
down two points and 2-1 in the series. He also was somewhat of a
no-show for the deciding Game 6, scoring 11 points while having
more turnovers (five) than baskets (four).
The other potential free agent the Nets would like to re-sign
is center Mikki Moore, who took over the starting job after Krstic
was lost in December with a knee injury.
Moore averaged career-bests of 9.8 points and 5.1 rebounds while
leading the league in field goal percentage at .609.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.