The Boston Celtics and the NBA will not stop Dominique Wilkin
BOSTON (AP) _ The Boston Celtics and the NBA will not stop Dominique Wilkins from playing next season in Greece, where he has signed for two years for a reported $8 million, according to a published report.
The team sent letters to the NBA and Steve Kauffman, Wilkins’ agent, detailing its position, the Boston Globe reported today.
Wilkins, 35, had two years left on the contract he signed with the Celtics as a free agent before last season. It reportedly would have paid him $8.4 million for the next two years.
But he had a disappointing season, averaging 17.8 points per game, and his departure frees up about $3.65 million under the salary cap for the Celtics to spend this season.
The NBA looked into the situation, ``but once both sides agreed that the contract was over, our response to Dominique was that you are free and clear to play overseas,″ the Globe quoted Jeffrey Mishkin, the NBA executive vice president for business and legal affairs, as saying.
``Both sides have agreed to walk away,″ Kauffman said.
Because of the lockout, the NBA prohibits the Celtics from commenting.
Wilkins contended he was able to sign with Panathinaikos of Athens because the Celtics breached his contract by not paying him a loan.
The team and the NBA said the loan would be a salary advance prohibited by the lockout. But the Celtics agreed not to pursue the issue after the lockout.
Another former Celtics forward, Xavier McDaniel, also has agreed to play in Greece with Thessaloniki Iraklis. Under the two-year contract, McDaniel must stay with the team 30 days, then has 15 days to decide whether to return to the NBA. McDaniel became an unrestricted free agent in June.