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Source: Mutombo, Sixers Agree on Deal

July 10, 2001

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PHILADELPHIA (AP) _ Dikembe Mutombo has reached a tentative agreement on a new contract with the Philadelphia 76ers, team sources said.

Under NBA rules, free agents cannot sign contracts until July 18, but Mutombo and the 76ers agreed on terms Monday, according to a team source who spoke to The Associated Press on the condition of anonymity.

The Philadelphia Inquirer reported Tuesday the agreement is for five years and would pay Mutombo more than $13 million per season, with a 12.5 percent annual raise and a 15 percent trade kicker.

Mutombo, who helped the Sixers reach the NBA Finals for the first time in 18 years and earned his fourth NBA Defensive Player of the Tear award, came to Philadelphia in a six-player deal with Atlanta on Feb. 22.

A seven-time All-Star, he solidified the Sixers’ defense, helped the team overcome numerous injuries and established himself as a scoring threat.

In 26 games with the 76ers, the 7-foot-2 Mutombo averaged 11.7 points and 12.4 rebounds. He also had 2.54 blocks per game.

He had a strong playoff season _ only Allen Iverson played more minutes _ averaging 13.9 points, 13.7 rebounds and 3.1 blocks.

After the NBA Finals, which Los Angeles won 4-1, Mutombo said he hoped to stay in Philadelphia, and that he and his wife were looking for area schools for their children.

``I know I’m going to be back here,″ he said. ``I have no doubt in my mind.″

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