The Portland Trail Blazers signed point guard Maurice Williams to a two-year deal on Thursday.
According to the Oregonian, the contract is worth $5.6 million which includes a player option for the second year. He is expected to back up 2013 NBA Rookie of the Year Damian Lillard.
Williams sees it slightly differently.
“You can look at me as a sixth starter.
“I’m going into the 11th year of my career. I am who I am. The player you saw last year and the player you saw the year before – I’m not going to diminish.”
The 30-year-old Williams was one of the few remaining unrestricted free agents prior to the signing. One of them was his former teammate with the Utah Jazz, Paul Millsap, who signed a two-year, $19 million deal with the Atlanta Hawks.
Williams actually wanted to remain with the Jazz, but Portland expressed interest in him. His previous relationships with Blazers GM Neil Olshey and head coach Terry Stotts (who was his coach when he played for the Milwaukee Bucks) sealed the deal.
CBS Sports’ Matt Moore also adds Williams wanted to start with the Jazz, who are actually looking to build around rookie Trey Burke.
Stotts is excited to bring an experienced veteran into the fold.
“I’m very excited to be back with Mo again. He adds versatility, scoring and veteran leadership to the team.”
Aside from the Jazz and Bucks, the 11-year veteran played previously for the Cleveland Cavaliers and Los Angeles Clippers. He averaged 12.9 points and 6.2 assists in the 2012-13 NBA season.