Thursday, August 7, 2008

Clippers Sign Free Agent Guard Jason Williams

The Los Angeles Clippers today signed free agent guard Jason Williams, according to Vice President of Basketball Operations Elgin Baylor. Per team policy, terms of the deal were not announced.

A veteran of 10 NBA seasons, Williams joins the Clippers after playing the last three years for Miami, where he helped the Heat to the 2006 NBA Championship. Williams, 32, has played in 679 career regular season games and averaged 11.4 points, 6.3 assists and 2.4 rebounds for a total of three teams. The six-foot-one, 180 pound point guard has also started and played in 53 career playoff contests, averaging 9.8 points, 3.7 assists, 2.2 rebounds and 0.9 steals.

“Jason is an experienced and proven player,” Baylor said. “He is a terrific ball handler with great passing ability and court vision.”

Playing alongside new Clippers teammate Ricky Davis with the Heat last season, Williams averaged 8.8 points, 1.9 rebounds and 4.6 assists in 28.1 minutes while appearing in 67 games. The West Virginia native finished eighth in the league with a 3.37 assists per turnover ratio and 12th with a 0.91 steals per turnover ratio.

“We are excited to add Jason to our squad,” Clippers head coach Mike Dunleavy said. “He brings added veteran leadership and playoff experience to our backcourt.”

Drafted by the Sacramento Kings in 1998 following his junior year at the University of Florida, Williams was named to the 1999 NBA All-Rookie Team following an electrifying first season that saw him average 12.8 points and 6.0 assists. Over the next nine seasons, Williams has emerged as one of the most dependable point guards in the NBA, averaging double-figures in scoring and at least five assists per game in eight of his ten years in the league.

Williams moved to Memphis for the 2001-02 season and over the next four seasons became the Grizzlies all-time assists leader and all-time leader in three-point field goals attempted. Williams joined Miami prior to the 2005-06 season that ended with an NBA Championship.

The Clippers new-look roster now stands at 14 players as Los Angeles has revamped its roster by adding a total of 10 new faces for the 2008-09 season.

Below is an update of the Clippers off-season transactions: