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D'Alessandro: Keyon Dooling Likely Not Jersey-Bound; New Orleans, Golden State Remain Possibilities

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Dave D'Alessandro brings Nets fans up to speed on New Jersey's pursuit of Keyon Dooling:

The Nets have been in touch with Rob Pelinka, they haven't made an offer for his client, and it's fairly obvious to both sides right now that this probably isn't going to happen unless the market dries up even faster than we thought.

[....]

Oh, you need more details: Keyon, of course, saw his market shrink when Orlando signed [Mickael] Pietrus, so his best bet to get into a more aggressive price range would be Golden State (now looking for a starter) and New Orleans (especially if [Jannero] Pargo leaves). They can give him midlevel money.

Meanwhile, the Nets, as you know, handed Eddie Najera a $3.4M jumpoff point, which leaves $2.18 from their MLE to give some worthy recruit.

So if they think that bargain recruit is Dooling . . . not gonna happen. Not until he exhausts all his other options, anyway. Funny thing about that: Some coaches would tell you that Keyon is good enough to start for a few teams in the league, but people are treating him like a September hire -- like he's Royal Ivey or Keith McLeod.

D'Alessandro goes on to mention that neither Dooling nor Pelinka should be surprised by the lack of offers. I'll grant him that this free-agent market is loaded with wings, but Dooling was arguably the best available point guard not named Baron Davis. I still can't get over the fact that Chris Duhon was a hotter commodity. Chris. Duhon.

The rest of free agency comes down to what Celtics forward James Posey decides to do. New Orleans is said to be in the market for him. Should he land there, he'd take all the Hornets' mid-level exception, thus whittling Dooling's options even further. Golden State might end up being Dooling's destination, although he might not start there, either. Currently, the Warriors have slotted Monta Ellis, last season's starting shooting guard, as their point guard, pairing him in the backcourt with Stephen Jackson while newly acquired Corey Maggette will man the three.

I'd be truly shocked if Dooling wound up having to accept an offer of less than $3.5 million annually. He's a better player than that. DeSagana Diop, of all people, got the full mid-level...