2:31pm: The deal is official, the Clippers announced via press release.
THURSDAY, 9:14am: The Clippers haven’t sent out a press release or formal announcement, but they did acknowledge the move on Twitter with a photo of Jordan and the words “We’re officially centered.” Jordan put pen to paper with Relativity Sports agent Jarinn Akana present, but not Fegan, his primary agent, reports Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports (on Twitter). The agency has yet to provide certification of the contract, Spears notes, so it can’t yet become official. Also present when Jordan signed the contract were Rivers, Paul, Griffin and Paul Pierce, according to Ramona Shelburne of ESPN.com (Twitter links). The Mavericks never got to meet with him face-to-face, as was supposed to have been the case, Shelburne adds (on Twitter). The deal contains a 15% trade kicker, reports Broderick Turner of the Los Angeles Times (Twitter link).
10:05pm: The deal is reportedly a five-year maximum salary contract in excess of $110MM, and includes a player option for the final season, Stein tweets.
9:47pm: In what turned out to be one of the more bizarre free agency dramas in recent memory, DeAndre Jordan has reversed course and has elected to re-sign with the Clippers, Ben Bolch of The Los Angeles Times reports (Twitter link). The center had reached a verbal agreement with the Mavericks last week, but changed his mind after having time to mull over his decision. The exact length and amount of the contract are unknown, but it is almost assuredly a maximum salary arrangement. The signing cannot become official until after midnight Eastern time this evening. Mavs team owner Mark Cuban has begun to notify people within the Dallas organization that Jordan is remaining in Los Angeles, Marc Stein of ESPN.com tweets.
The unusual circumstances surrounding Jordan’s free agency convinced Clippers officials that they needed to remain at Jordan’s side until he is formally able to put pen to paper on a new contract, given that Jordan had already changed his mind once during the process, Stein and Ramona Shelburne of ESPN.com note. Sources informed the ESPN duo that Jordan, in a meeting today at his Houston home with several teammates and top Clippers officials, indicated to the team that he intended to renege on last Friday’s commitment to sign a four-year, $80-plus million max deal with the Mavericks and return to Los Angeles instead.
There were conflicting reports regarding Jordan’s agent, Dan Fegan, that he steered the center toward the Mavs because of the close relationship Fegan has with Cuban. One of Jordan’s reasons for wanting to leave Los Angeles was his desire to have an expanded offensive role. Clippers coach/executive Doc Rivers reportedly informed Jordan that he wasn’t aware of the veteran’s desire for a larger role, and the Clippers offered to hire a big man coach and increase Jordan’s number of touches on the offensive end. Jordan was apparently tired of playing third wheel behind Blake Griffin and Chris Paul. The center also reportedly didn’t see eye-to-eye with Paul, though there were conflicting reports on just how much of a factor that was in Jordan’s initial willingness to leave Los Angeles.
Jordan made 82 appearances for the Clippers last season, averaging 11.5 points, 15.0 rebounds, and 2.2 blocks in 34.4 minutes per game, with a slash line of .710/.250/.397. The big man’s numbers through seven NBA seasons are 8.0 PPG, 9.0 RPG, and 1.7 BPG, with a shooting line of .664/.125/.417.