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NBA notebook: Bobcats sign Williams

Associated Press
The NBA notebook …
CHARLOTTE ó The Bobcats have signed shooting guard Reggie Williams to a two-year contract, the team confirmed on Thursday.
Williams, entering his third NBA season, is expected to join the Bobcats today for workouts.
Williams had been a restricted free agent but Golden State rescinded his rights in their efforts to sign a center.
Bobcats coach Paul Silas said last week his team’s biggest need was to find a shooting guard and Williams fills that role.
He played in 80 games last season for the Warriors and averaged 9.2 points. As a rookie two years ago, he averaged 15.2 points and 4.2 rebounds in 24 games. Williams didn’t garner much attention in college playing at Virginia Military, but has been a pleasant surprise.
HANSBROUGH WITH RESERVE ROLE
INDIANAPOLIS ó Tyler Hansbrough never faced challenges like these at North Carolina.
The man formerly known as ěPsycho Tî left Chapel Hill as one of college basketballís most popular and decorated players in recent memory, but his pro career has been a mixed bag. After fighting through an injury and an illness his first year and a disagreement with his coach in the early part of his second year, Hansbrough emerged as a solid starter for the Indiana Pacers during the second half of last season.
That wasnít good enough for management. When free agency finally arrived after the lockout, Pacers president Larry Bird went out and brought in former All-Star David West as the starting power forward.
Hansbrough has chosen to view Westís arrival as an opportunity.
ěIím not going to look at it as a self-centered guy, to say this guy could take a lot of my minutes,î Hansbrough said. ěI think, weíre on the team together and weíre trying to win ball games. Thatís what itís about.î
Both Bird and coach Frank Vogel have said they expect Hansbrough to remain a key contributor to the team. West sees the two as a tandem, and he plans to take Hansbrough under his wing.
ěI want to help him, help him develop as a young guy,î West said. ěI feel like he can have an impact.î
KINGSí ARENA
SACRAMENTO, Calif.ó Sacramento Kings owners Joe and Gavin Maloof are growing increasingly optimistic that the city will approve an acceptable financing plan for a new arena by the March 1 deadline to keep the franchise from relocating.
Gavin Maloof said Thursday that the team is pleased with the progress of the cityís latest arena project and is ěencouraged that something can be doneî in time. Joe Maloof said the brothers are ěoptimistic guysî and would love for the franchise to remain in Sacramento.
The Sacramento City Council has approved several preliminary measures to finance the arena. A final vote on the project is expected in February.
CRAWFORD TO PORTLAND
PORTLAND, Ore. ó Free-agent guard Jamal Crawford has decided to sign with the Portland Trail Blazers.
Crawford, who was reportedly considering Sacramento and the Blazers, announced his choice on Twitter, posting ěRip city!!!î
The terms of the deal were not clear. The Trail Blazers refused to comment because the deal had yet to be formally signed and Crawfordís agent could not immediately be reached for comment Thursday.
An 11-year veteran, Crawford played for the Atlanta Hawks the last two seasons. For his career, he has averaged 15.2 points, 2.6 rebounds and 3.9 assists. He won the NBAís Sixth Man award in 2010.
The 6-foot-5 shooting guard will help the Blazers deal with the absence of Brandon Roy, who says he plans to pursue medical retirement, and Rudy Fernandez, who was traded away on draft night in June.
It was expected that the Blazers would use the NBAís new amnesty clause to waive Roy, freeing up salary cap space and allowing the team to use a mid-level exemption on Crawford.
Crawford is close to Roy, a fellow Seattle native.
HAMILTON WITH BULLS
DEERFIELD, Ill. ó Richard Hamilton wants another championship, and he sees a chance to win one with the Chicago Bulls.
The veteran guard called the Bulls ěan awesome fit for meî on Thursday and said heís looking forward to playing alongside MVP Derrick Rose. The Bulls won more games than any other team during the regular season and reached the Eastern Conference finals, but one thing they could have used was more height and scoring in the backcourt.
Hamilton, who is 6-foot-7, should fill that need.
The three-time All-Star signed for three years and $15 million on Wednesday, with the team holding an option for that third season.
His nine-year run in Detroit produced a championship and regular trips to the Eastern Conference finals.

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