Detroit likely looking to replace Okur

Updated: July 14, 2004, 12:41 AM ET
ESPN.com news services

Free agent forward Antonio McDyess agreed to a four-year contract Monday with the Detroit Pistons worth $23 million.

A league source told ESPN Insider Chad Ford on Monday that an additional year would be guaranteed if McDyess plays a minimum of 60 games in the fourth year of the deal.

McDyess is expected to sign the contract Wednesday at his home in Houston.

"We're happy to have Antonio as a new member to our family and we think he's going to be a great addition," team president Joe Dumars said Wednesday just after the expiration of the NBA's two-week moratorium on player movement. "Antonio fits the profile of the type of guys we want here in Detroit."

McDyess finished last season with the Phoenix Suns after being part of the January trade that sent Stephon Marbury to the Knicks.

The Boston Celtics were among the serious suitors for McDyess, who would likely replace Mehmet Okur in the Pistons' rotation. Okur has agreed to a $50 million offer sheet from the Utah Jazz and the Pistons are unlikely to match it. Detroit is still hoping to re-sign free agent forward Rasheed Wallace, whose play in the second half of the season and playoffs helped the Pistons claim the NBA championship.

The 29-year-old McDyess was one of the league's premier young power forwards in the late '90s, averaging 21.2 points and 10.7 rebounds for the Denver Nuggets in the 1998-99 season. But a series of knee injuries have robbed McDyess of much of his explosiveness. He tore his left patella tendon in 2001, an injury that limited him to 10 games that season. He was traded to New York on draft night 2002 along with a draft pick and the rights to guard Frank Williams for Marcus Camby and forward Nene.

The Knicks penciled McDyess into their starting lineup and he looked as if he had fully recovered from the injury early in the 2002 preseason. But he fractured his left kneecap in a preseason game and missed the entire 2002-03 season. He came back last season and played in 18 games for New York before being dealt to Phoenix. For the season, McDyess played in 42 games and averaged 6.9 points and 6.1 rebounds.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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