The Knicks have finalized a one-year deal with Argentinian point guard Pablo Prigioni, according to his agent George Bass.
The Knicks haven't made the signing official yet, but a source told ESPN New York that the contract amount will be for the rookie's minimum, which was agreed to on Tuesday night.
Bass said that Prigioni had been on Knicks GM Glen Grunwald's radar for about five years. Grunwald and the team's front office met with Prigioni a few weeks ago in New York, where he'll be playing in the NBA for the first time as a 35-year-old. Bass said Prigioni is a pass-first point guard like Jason Kidd and will do a great job mentoring Jeremy Lin.
In addition to Prigioni's proven success playing for club teams in Argentina and Europe, where he was a top passer and defender, Bass said the Knicks felt like he was young enough with no major injuries to help the team. Prigioni will serve as a backup to Lin -- once the Knicks match his Rockets' offer sheet for four years, $28.8 million -- and Kidd, who's yet to sign. (It will likely at the mid-level exception of $3.09 million.) Mike Woodson said Wednesday in Las Vegas that he may use Lin and Kidd together at times in the backcourt, so Prigioni could get some solid minutes with the second unit.
Prigioni is currently training with the Argentinian national team in Venezuela to prepare for the Olympics in London. He was the starting point guard on the bronze-medal team in Beijing in 2008, playing with Manu Ginobili, Luis Scola and Andres Nocioni.
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