Matthew Dellavedova joins NBL champions Melbourne United

Matthew Dellavedova has agreed to sign a three-year deal with Melbourne United in the NBL.

Dellavedova, an eight-year NBA veteran, is coming off a second stint with the Cleveland Cavaliers and is currently with the Australian Boomers ahead of the national team's Tokyo Olympics campaign.

The signing will see Dellavedova return to his home state of Victoria, taking over United's starting point guard spot left vacant by Mitch McCarron, who sources say has signed a three-year deal with the Adelaide 36ers.

Over his NBA career, Dellavedova averaged 5.5 points and 3.7 assists per game, beginning his time in Cleveland after going undrafted in 2013, and winning a championship as part of the LeBron James-led team in 2016. Immediately after winning a title with the Cavaliers, Dellavedova was signed-and-traded to the Milwaukee Bucks, only to be dealt back to Cleveland, where he played the next three seasons.

Dellavedova's last two seasons in the NBA were interrupted by injuries, most notably a persistent concussion issue that kept him out of a significant portion of his 2020-21 campaign.

United has agreed to terms that would allow him to explore opportunities within the NBA via the upcoming free agency period.

"I am really excited to sign with Melbourne United and come back to the NBL. It's a great team with a winning culture and some great teammates that I've loved playing with in the past for the Boomers," Dellavedova said.

"Melbourne is close to family and my hometown of Maryborough, and I have always wanted to come back here and play at some point. I'm glad to make the announcement today that when that time comes, I'll be pulling on a United jersey.

"The NBL is a quality league that continues to evolve and has a lot of respect around the world - I'm excited for the challenge and continuing to help grow the game of basketball in Australia.

"For now, there is one focus - the Boomers and winning a Gold Medal."

The 30-year-old guard will join a United team that's coming off an NBL championship; the franchise's second over the last four years. Dellavedova will give United an all-Boomers backcourt, alongside the team's star shooting guard, Chris Goulding.

Dellavedova's impending arrival in Melbourne is the NBL's most significant signing since Andrew Bogut joined the Sydney Kings in 2018.

He joins Goulding, Shea Ili, Jo Lual Acuil Jr, Jack White, Mason Peatling, David Barlow, the newly-signed Brad Newley, and Zac Triplett (development player) on United's roster for the 2021-22 NBL season.

""It is huge, for our sport, for this league and for our club. To have Delly back home in Victoria, playing in front of the Melbourne United fans, I think it is something that we should all be really excited about," United coach Dean Vickerman said.

"He's going to bring everything that we are looking for in that position. Elite-level competitiveness, hustle, grit, grind and passion. He is also an excellent facilitator, with his ability to pass the basketball he will make everyone else around him even better."

The Illawarra Hawks also made a significant move, re-signing guard Tyler Harvey to a new three-year deal, sources said. Harvey, the NBL's third leading scorer over the 2020-21 season, was a priority for the Hawks this off-season after finishing among the finalists for the league's MVP award.

Over in Adelaide, the 36ers are in advanced talks with Dusty Hannahs for the upcoming NBL season, sources said. The sharp-shooting combo guard, who last played with the Santa Cruz Warriors in the NBA G-League, received interest from multiple teams across the NBL, but is closing in on a new deal with the 36ers.

The 36ers have also re-signed Isaac Humphries to a one-year deal, sources said, keeping the star Australian big-man after injury interrupted his otherwise impressive 2020-21 season.

The New Zealand Breakers are also remaining among the most active teams in free agency, signing France's Hugo Besson to a three-year deal, sources said. Besson will join the Breakers as an import.

Peyton Siva has also signed with the Breakers for the upcoming NBL season, sources said, while the team is close to a new deal with Tai Webster. Siva is coming off a five-year stint with Germany's Alba Berlin.

In Sydney, the Kings have signed Wani Swaka Lo Buluk as a replacement player for the injured Dejan Vasiljevic, sources said.