Amare Stoudemire has reportedly agreed to a five-year, $100 million contract with the New York Knicks. As per league rules, the contract cannot officially be signed until July 8.
“The Knicks are back,” he said with a grin after a meeting with the Knicks' officials.
The Knicks and Stoudemire’s camp finalized the deal this afternoon after days of speculation on when the final word on the contract would come down. As it turns out, the only thing holding the proceedings up was the contractual language.
“All done,” Happy Walters, Stoudemire's agent, said in a text message to Yahoo Sports.
The deal comes after Stoudemire rejected a final offer from the Phoenix Suns on Friday. In response, the Suns reached a four year, $18 million agreement with forward, Hakim Warrick.
The Suns’ offer was a five-year, $71 million deal that only included three guaranteed seasons. The fourth season contained a 50 percent guarantee that would come into effect based on the number of minutes Stoudemire played in the first three seasons. The fifth season had similar terms.
The incentives were put into place because of concerns over Stoudemire’s past injuries. As a result of previous knee and eye problems, insurance would not cover Stoudemire’s salary if he to miss time.
Stoudemire can be considered the first significant domino to officially fall in the highly anticipated 2010 NBA free agency period. Prior to him, the other marquee superstars available all chose to re-sign with their respective teams.
Yesterday, Joe Johnson accepted a six-year, $119 million contract offer with the Atlanta Hawks. The deal was worth nearly $27 million more than any other team could offer.
The New York Knicks were the first team to meet with Johnson early Thursday morning, and made it known that he along with Amare Stoudemire were amongst their more desired free agent prospects.
Now, the Knicks’ new prize pick-up will be used as a bargaining chip with free-agent forward, LeBron James.