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Sports

June 17, 2013

Clippers, Celts at impasse over Rivers

(Continued)

Rivers has three years on his Boston contract that pays him $7 million per year. NBA executives said Clippers owner Donald Sterling might have been willing to pay Rivers $6 million a year over three years.

The Clippers also are being told that Garnett, 37, would be willing to waive his no-trade clause to join Rivers in Los Angeles, the executives said.

NBA executives said Danny Ainge, the Celtics’ president of basketball operations, told Rivers that the talks had stalled between the teams, and Rivers then said he was prepared to return to the Celtics.

If, or when, the Clippers’ focus returns to Shaw and Hollins, they will find they have competition from the Denver Nuggets for both.

Shaw interviewed with the Nuggets on Thursday and Friday and has another interview scheduled Tuesday, NBA executives said.

Hollins had to reschedule an interview with Denver from Saturday to next week because of travel issues leaving Los Angeles on Friday. During his two-day visit with the Clippers, Hollins met with Sterling, executives said.

“The Clippers like the coaches that are available,” an executive said.

If Howard walks this summer as a free agent, the Lakers would have ample room under the NBA salary cap to pursue free agents next year. The team currently has only one contract on the books for the 2014-15 season, Steve Nash for $9.7 million. That would leave them in position to sign two maximum-salary free agents next year and still have enough to sign Kobe Bryant for one more year at about $10 million.

Bryant ($30.5 million), Pau Gasol ($19.3 million) and Metta World Peace ($7.7 million) are all entering the final season of their Lakers contracts. Either Gasol or World Peace is likely to be waived via the one-time “amnesty” provision next month.

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