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David Aldridge

Rasheed Wallace (left) will join Kevin Garnett and Co. in Boston as the Celtics try to corral another NBA title.
Jim Rogash/Getty Images

Hope of title leads Wallace to commit to Celtics

By David Aldridge, TNT Analyst
Posted Jul 6 2009 7:05AM

For Rasheed Wallace, the lure of playing with Boston's superstar-laden lineup was just too much to pass up.

The Celtics have reached an agreement with Wallace on a two-year deal for the mid-level exception, which was $5.585 million last season and is expected to rise for the 2009-10 season. Figures for all salary cap exceptions and the cap itself will be finalized this week after the league and the Players' Association complete their audit of league finances.

Wallace played the last six seasons with the Detroit Pistons, where he won an NBA championship in 2004. He heads to a Celtics team loaded with veterans such as Kevin Garnett, Ray Allen and Paul Pierce, and hoping to make at least one more title run.

Wallace was in the process of scheduling visits to San Antonio, Orlando and Dallas this week. But the Celtics' team recruiting, with Kevin Garnett, Ray Allen, Paul Pierce, coach Doc Rivers, general manager Danny Ainge and majority owner Wyc Grousbeck all coming to visit Wallace in the Detroit suburbs last week moved the 35-year-old into action sooner than expected.

The notion of playing with three All-Stars, including a certain Hall of Famer in Garnett and a possible one in Pierce, plus the opportunity to compete for a championship solidified Wallace's desire to play for the Celtics.

"He decided to forgo the other trips and stuff and decided he's going to Boston," Wallace's agent, Bill Strickland said late Sunday evening. "When he sat down and thought about it some over this weekend, he thought Boston, in his mind, was the best fit for him, in terms of his skill set and what they already had. He decided, 'why waste time? I don't have to hassle over it.'"

Wallace has averaged 15 points and 6.9 rebounds in 14 NBA seasons. He averaged 12 points and 7.4 rebounds last season.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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