posted on Aug, 18 2004 @ 08:51 AM
Erick Dampier's odyssey will apparently wind up not in the Big Apple but in Big D.
The Dallas Mavericks have agreed in principle to a trade that would send forwards Eduardo Najera and Christian Laettner, two future first-round picks
and cash to the Golden State Warriors, sources told ESPN The Magazine's Ric Bucher on Tuesday.
In exchange, the Mavs would acquire Dampier, center Evan Eschmeyer and guard Dan Dickau from Golden State.
The deal, however, cannot be consummated until later this summer because NBA rules stipulate that no player may be dealt twice within a two-month
period. Both Laettner and Dickau were traded earlier this summer.
Calls to Dampier's cell phone were not immediately returned Tuesday night and his agent, Dan Fegan, also didn't immediately respond to a message left
by the Associated Press.
The trade also is contingent on Dampier reaching agreement with the Mavericks, an NBA source told the AP.
Dampier opted out of his contract with the Warriors in late June and became a free agent. The 6-foot-11 veteran, who spent the past seven seasons with
Golden State, met with the New York Knicks and several other teams in recent weeks.
He apparently will also forgo a six-year, $50 million offer from the Atlanta Hawks.
Dampier, drafted 10th overall by Indiana in 1996, hoped to join the New York Knicks as part of a sign-and-trade deal, but the Warriors refused to take
on salary to accommodate their former starting center's wishes.
He was also wooed by Jermaine O'Neal, who would have liked to have had the 6-foot-11, 270-pound Dampier do the dirty work inside for the Pacers, who
were overwhelmed by Detroit's frontcourt in their Eastern Conference finals loss in this year's NBA playoffs.
Dampier ranked fourth in the league in rebounding and seventh with 42 double-doubles.
The 30-year-old Dampier is coming off the most productive season in his eight-year career. He averaged a double-double with 12.3 points and 12.0
rebounds while also blocking 1.85 shots in 32.5 minutes per game.
The Warriors have made many changes this offseason since finishing 37-45 and missing the playoffs for the 10th straight year.
Chris Mullin became the Warriors' new executive vice president of basketball operations. He fired coach Eric Musselman and replaced him with former
Stanford coach Mike Montgomery. Mullin also hired Rod Higgins as general manager.