Knicks Sign Jerome James
14th July, 2005 - 12:27 am
Howard Beck/NY Times - Jerome James, who played the last four seasons in Seattle, agreed yesterday to a five-year deal with the Knicks, according to his agent. Precise terms will not be set until the league completes its new labor deal. But it was expected that James will earn about $5 million in the first year of the contract, and $29 million over five years
Before the contract is signed, James will be installed as the starting center, a job he will win by default. The Knicks traded their only true center, Nazr Mohammed, in February, and traded his replacement, Kurt Thomas, in June. The team drafted a center, Channing Frye, but he may not be ready for full-time work as a rookie.
So the void will be filled by James, a 7-foot-1 journeyman who turns 30 in November and has career averages of 4.9 points and 3.5 rebounds a game.
"It was clear once they moved Kurt Thomas and moved Nazr that they were in need of a real center, and that's what Jerome is ( ) ," said James's agent, Marc Fleisher. "He's looking forward to the challenge."