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Knicks officially announce sign-and-trade with Blazers for Raymond Felton

By Ben Golliver | Blogger

The band is back together.

The New York Knicks officially announced a multi-player sign-and-trade with the Portland Trail Blazers that landed two former Knicks back in the Big Apple.

New York acquired guard Raymond Felton and forward Kurt Thomas from the Portland Trail Blazers in exchange for forward Jared Jeffries, center Dan Gadzuric, a 2016 second-round pick, the rights to Georgios Printezis and Kostas Papanikolaou, plus cash considerations.

Felton, who spent part of the 2010-11 season with the Knicks before getting shipped to the Denver Nuggets, and Thomas, who played in New York from 1998 to 2005, join Marcus Camby, who was also re-acquired by New York in a sign-and-trade agreement last week. Felton is now teamed up with All-Star forward Carmelo Anthony; he was part of the outgoing package that landed Anthony in New York at the 2011 trade deadline.

Felton, who struggled during his one season in Portland and clashed with former coach Nate McMillan, will reportedly receive a 3-year contract worth $10 million. Thomas is entering the final season of his contract that will pay him the veteran's minimum.

With Felton becoming the third point guard on New York's roster, the Knicks must face a decision on whether or not to match a substantial Houston Rockets offer sheet for restricted free agent guard Jeremy Lin. Ken Berger of CBSSports.com has a breakdown of the Lin situation here.

Blazers GM Neil Olshey said on Monday that his team would waive Gadzuric, whose contract was entering its final season and was non-guaranteed. New York's cash considerations go towards Jeffries' contract, which will pay him $1.4 million in 2012-13. Jeffries appeared in just 39 games for the Knicks last season due to knee problems.

"This trade allowed us to acquire multiple assets for the future without impacting our current cap position," Olshey said in a statement. "Jared Jeffries provides depth and a versatile skill to our front court. He is a consummate professional on and off the floor, competes every night and is a veteran leader for our locker room."

For Portland, the deal boils down to getting the Draft pick for its role in facilitating the Felton signing, which New York could not have done outright, as they are over the cap. Both Greek players are under contract for the 2012-13 season.

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