July 17, 1997 in Sports

Christie Signs Contract With ‘Family’ For 7 Years

Compiled From Wire Services
 

Doug Christie signed a seven-year contract worth more than $22 million with Toronto on Wednesday and the guard gave credit to the Raptors vice-president and soon-to-be owner Isiah Thomas for running the NBA franchise like a family.

“Isiah understands,” Christie said. “The way he runs things, you’re not just in, you’re all the way in.”

The 6-foot-6 Christie, who had one year left on his original contract, made $1.35 million last season when he improved his numbers in all defensive and offensive categories and was runner-up to Isaac Austin of Miami for the league’s most improved player award.

Christie averaged 14.5 points, 5.3 rebounds, 3.9 assists and 2.48 steals, which was second-best in the NBA.

J.R. Reid signed with the Charlotte Hornets as a free agent, more than four years after the club traded away the player they once made a first-round pick.

Reid, a former North Carolina star who played more than three seasons with the Hornets, is returning to the NBA after playing for one year in France. Contract terms were not disclosed by the Hornets.

Bryon Russell, whose 3-point shooting and defense were a key to Utah’s inaugural trip to the NBA Finals, signed a five-year contract with the Jazz.

The deal reportedly is worth at least $20 million, including $3 million in its first year. That’s roughly nine times the $385,000 Russell made last season.

Forward-center Dino Radja was placed on waivers by the Boston Celtics.

The Denver Nuggets signed first-round draft picks Danny Fortson and Bobby Jackson, and new coach Bill Hanzlik said he expects both players to contribute to the team’s new up-tempo philosophy.

Paul Westhead, former coach of the Los Angeles Lakers, Chicago Bulls and Denver Nuggets, was hired as an assistant coach by the Golden State Warriors.

Bob Weinhauer, who joined the Milwaukee Bucks as an assistant to coach Chris Ford last August, was appointed the franchise’s general manager.


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