Wednesday, December 21, 2011
Sources: Samuel Dalembert agrees
By Marc Stein
The Houston Rockets have reached terms on a new contract with free-agent center Samuel Dalembert, according to sources close to the situation.
Sources told ESPN.com that Dalembert has agreed to a two-year deal worth $13.7 million -- $7 million this season and $6.7 million in 2012-13. But the Rockets have a team option for the second season that would allow them to buy out of the contract for a fee of $1.5 million.
Dalembert told Fox Sports Florida on Tuesday night that he was on the verge of re-signing with the Sacramento Kings, but the Kings issued a news release Wednesday afternoon saying they had withdrawn their offer to Dalembert.
The Rockets held a face-to-face visit with Dalembert early in free agency but made no secret that their dream target to replace the retired Yao Ming was Los Angeles Lakers big man Pau Gasol.
The Rockets thought they had Gasol, too, only for NBA commissioner David Stern to step in and veto a three-team trade that would have sent Chris Paul from the league-owned New Orleans Hornets to the Lakers and Gasol to Houston.
Paul was subsequently traded to the Los Angeles Clippers. With its No. 1 free-agent target Nene having also elected to re-sign with the Denver Nuggets, Houston moved Wednesday to seal a deal with Dalembert before Sacramento could finalize a deal to keep the Haiti native.
Marc Stein is a senior NBA writer for ESPN.com.