NBA: Perkins signs as backup big man with Cavaliers
CLEVELAND, United States – Kendrick Perkins, who helped Boston win the 2008 NBA title, signed Tuesday with the Cleveland Cavaliers and will become the backup center to Russian big man Timofey Mozgov.
Perkins, a 12-year NBA veteran with 135 playoff games, will add depth and experience to the Cavaliers, whose superstar leader LeBron James was happy to welcome him onto the club.
“The Land welcome my bro as well as my muscle(LOL) @KendrickPerkins to the city with open arms! Happy and thrilled to have u aboard homie!!,” James posted on Twitter.
Several contending teams were interested in the 30-year-old Texan, who played for Boston from 2003-2011 and then went to Oklahoma City until being sent to Utah last week as part of a three-team trade deal and having his contract bought out by the Jazz.
Perkins has averaged only 4.0 points and 5.5 rebounds a game this season, but could be invaluable in a Cleveland locker room where championship experience is limited.
The Cavaliers have been bringing in tall talent for six months to join James, a four-time NBA Most Valuable Player who won two titles with Miami but returned to his hometown club last July vowing to make it a champion.
While James and Australian-born guard Kyrie Irving have manned the backcourt, forward Kevin Love was added from Minnesota to provide front-line power.
But Brazilian big man Anderson Varejao was lost for the season last December with a ruptured left Achilles tendon, forcing the Cavaliers to make a deal with Denver for Mozgov, who played under Cavaliers coach David Blatt on the 2012 London Olympic Russian bronze medal-winning team.
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