"I'm ready to get it over with," Swift said before playing in
Tracy McGrady's celebrity softball tournament. "It will relieve a
lot of pressure."
Swift's agent told several Houston media outlets on July 18 that
the Rockets had reached a deal with the player, but free agents
could not be signed until the NBA completed a new collective
bargaining agreement. That agreement was signed early Saturday.
Swift said he's excited about playing for the Rockets.
"This is a great group of guys and I felt that this was the
best situation for me," he said. "It was just really an easy
decision. This is a good team and a good organization."
Swift, the No. 2 pick in the 2000 draft, spent the last five
season with the Grizzlies, first in Vancouver and then in Memphis.
The 6-foot-10 player averaged more than 10 points and four rebounds
Swift said McGrady and Rockets general manager Carroll Dawson
played a role in helping him reach the decision. Dawson visited the
player and at his family's home in Shreveport, La.
"T-Mac did a little bit of recruiting," Swift said. "That was
pretty big for him to do that. That's the whole thing -- to feel
wanted in a situation."
McGrady said he looks forward to Swift joining the team.
"We're just going to bring his ability out because we're
definitely going to challenge him every day," McGrady said.
Stromile Swift will sign with the Houston Rockets early next week, the free agent said Saturday.