According to Chris Haynes of CSNNW.com (H/T Alex Kennedy of Hoops World), free agent center Marcus Camby has narrowed his choice of teams seeking his services to several contenders, and the San Antonio Spurs are among the contenders.
Haynes states that the Spurs, along with the New York Knicks, Miami Heat, Boston Celtics, Dallas Mavericks, and Houston Rockets were all teams that contacted his agent last night when free agency began.
Though he’s 38 years old, Camby was able to play in 59 of 66 games in this past shortened season, where he began with the Portland Trailblazers and ended with the Rockets, when he was traded late in the season. This past season, Camby was still able to put up some good defensive numbers as he averaged 9 rebounds and 1.4 blocks between both teams in roughly 22 minutes a night. In 19 games with the Rockets, he was also averaging 7.1 points per game.
For the Spurs, it’s understandable to see why they have interest in Camby. In times when Tim Duncan went to the bench against the Oklahoma City Thunder in the Western Conference Finals, the paint seemed to be wide open as the Thunder began to attack the relentlessly because only Tiago Splitter, Boris Diaw, Matt Bonner, or DeJuan Blair were the protectors.
The report states Camby isn’t going to visit with the teams because he knows what he is looking for at this point in his career. If the Spurs could sign him with the veteran minimum, it would give them a defensive big man, though older, who is 6’11 and can still grab rebounds and help Duncan in the paint.
If Camby also signed with the Spurs for the minimum, it could also potentially still allow the team to negotiate a contract with free agent Diaw, and maybe Slovenian Erazem Lorbek, as well as continue to search for a trade partner for Blair.
Update: Monday July 2, 1:35 PM CST
According to Chris Tomasson of Fox Sports Florida, Camby’s first option in free agency is considering a return to the Rockets. Camby might also be out of the Spurs’ price range since he’s asking for a 2-3 year deal and roughly 3 million dollars per year.
Sources say Marcus Camby has interest in Heat but his first choice remains returning to Houston. Would want $3 million exception from Heat, so they couldn’t sign both Ray Allen & Camby. Sources say if Rockets have a good offer, Camby could return regardless of whether Rockets get Omer Asik.
Camby, 38, wants a 2- or 3-year contract. Believes can play 3 more years.
For the Spurs, if they were to offer Camby a deal like what he’s being offered in Houston, they’d probably have to move on from re-signing Diaw or bringing in Lorbek. Plus, a two or three year deal for Camby would mean he would be 40 or 41 years old when his contract ended.
My opinion: Pass if he’s asking for that type of deal.