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Posey to Hornets

Posted by Marc J. Spears, Globe Staff  July 16, 2008 03:45 PM

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Former Celtics forward James Posey sought and found the four-year contract he dreamed of with the New Orleans Hornets today.

After winning a championship in his lone season with Boston, Posey has agreed to a four-year, $25 million contract with the Hornets, according to an NBA source. Posey's agent Mark Bartelstein has been seeking a four-year deal from the likes of Boston, Cleveland, Detroit, Washington, Toronto and the Lakers. New Orleans decided to take the leap of faith by agreeing to the needed pact today. The Celtics were willing to give the 31-year-old the full-mid level exception over three years, which would have started at $5.5 million next season, but weren't comfortable with adding the fourth season.

"It's always tough," said Posey, in a phone interview today in Los Angeles before tonight's taping of the ESPY Awards. "It's a tough decision with the team and what we had accomplished as an organization and with the Celtic pride. We were able to win it all. For it to come down to this is never easy."

Posey averaged 7.4 points and 4.4 rebounds in 24.6 minutes per game in his lone season with the Celtics and was an NBA Sixth Man of the Year candidate. The nine-year NBA veteran also opted out of a contract on June 30 that would have paid him $3.4 million next season.

"We liked James and we wanted him back," Celtics general manager Danny Ainge said. "He got a good deal in New Orleans. We were unwilling to go four years."

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