The Utah Jazz are bringing back Raja Bell.
Bell and the Jazz agreed to a three-year deal worth around $10 million, said agent Herb Rudoy. The 33-year-old shooting guard just needs to pass a physical, which probably won’t happen until next week.
Rudoy said the former Boston University star is thrilled to be coming back to Utah, where his career took off during two seasons with the Jazz between 2003 and 2005. He was a favorite with both the fans and coach Jerry Sloan because of his defense.
“He loved playing for Jerry. He loved living in Salt Lake,’’ Rudoy said. “It was an easy decision for him to come back.’’
Jazz general manager Kevin O’Connor said Bell just needs to pass his physical and show his left wrist has recovered from surgery last year and Utah will gladly welcome back the gritty defender who can motivate his young teammates.
The return of Bell indicates the Jazz won’t be matching Portland’s front-loaded offer for restricted free agent Wesley Matthews, who made Utah’s roster in training camp as an undrafted free agent and was a starter before the end of his rookie season.
Meanwhile, the Jazz aren’t sure if they just picked up a new power forward or center. Al Jefferson can play both positions, which is one of the biggest reasons they made a deal with the Minnesota Timberwolves to get him.
Jefferson says he’s excited to join a contender led by point guard Deron Williams. Jefferson hasn’t played for a winning team since he was a rookie with the Celtics (2004-05.)
Miller announced it on Twitter, saying “It’s official’’ and thanking Heat owner Micky Arison and team president Pat Riley.