Lee, Hill dally with Wolves but land elsewhere

  • Article by: JERRY ZGODA , Star Tribune
  • Updated: July 20, 2012 - 11:13 PM

Both free agents were pursued, but Courtney Lee landed with the Celtics and Jordan Hill stayed with the Lakers.

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Courtney Lee, right.

Photo: George Bridges, Mct

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Two players the Timberwolves pursued in free agency reached agreement with other teams on Friday.

Shooting guard Courtney Lee signed a four-year, $22 million contract and was dealt from Houston to Boston in a sign-and-trade agreement with a Celtics team that had courted him since the NBA free-agency period began July 1.

Power forward Jordan Hill reached a two-year, $8 million agreement to stay with the Los Angeles Lakers.

The Wolves continued discussions with Lee after their dance with restricted free agent Nicolas Batum finally, officially ended Wednesday when Portland matched their four-year, $45 million offer sheet.

Lee played for Wolves coach Rick Adelman in Houston and would have given the Wolves another wing player now that their attempt to upgrade the small-forward spot stalled with their failure to obtain Batum.

Batum, Hill and Boston restricted free-agent center Greg Stiemsma all visited Minnesota shortly after the free-agency period began.

Hill's agent, Kevin Bradbury, said his client received bigger offers but ultimately decided to stay in Los Angeles with a Lakers team that has added two-time league MVP Steve Nash because he hopes to win an NBA title there.

Steimsma's agent, Mike Naiditch, flew to Las Vegas Friday to meet with Timberwolves representatives. He said Stiemsma received an offer from another team on Friday and will consider that offer while discussions with the Wolves continue. Boston is not expected to be able to match any offers because of its extended salary-cap situation.

The Wolves also have had discussions with agents for free agents Ronnie Brewer, Dominic McGuire and Brandon Rush, among others.

They did not make a waiver offer to claim Orono's own Jon Leuer after Houston released him on Wednesday. The Wolves would not have gotten him anyway, because Cleveland claimed the second-year power forward and would have had priority even if the Wolves had made a claim.

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