Utah Jazz aren't the only team interested in Wesley Matthews

Published: Thursday, July 1 2010 11:40 p.m. MDT

In this photo taken Jan. 25, 2010, Wesley Matthews celebrates after hitting a 3-pointer in the final minutes as the Utah Jazz defeat the Phoenix Suns in Salt Lake City.

Tom Smart, Deseret News

SALT LAKE CITY — The Jazz made contact with the camp of restricted free agent Wesley Matthews, their starting shooting guard, shortly after the NBA's summer free-agency negotiating period opened late Wednesday night.

They weren't alone.

But even with sincere attention from multiple teams, it could be several days before Matthews knows his future, his agent suggested Thursday.

"It will take a little time, but he had a lot of interest," agent Lance Young said by phone from his office at the Octagon agency in McLean, Va.

One call, Young added, came from Jazz general manager Kevin O'Connor.

Further discussion between Utah, which also is negotiating to retain unrestricted free agent Carlos Boozer, and the Matthews camp is expected soon.

"I know Wesley is a priority to them," Young said, "but Boozer's definitely their top priority."

Matthews is a restricted free agent, meaning the Jazz can match if he signs another team's offer sheet.

And other teams could target him, including Portland, as first reported by Yahoo.com.

The Trail Blazers are the same team that signed Jazz backup power forward Paul Millsap to a four-year, front-loaded $32 million offer sheet last offseason — a deal Utah matched.

It's uncertain how Matthews would fit in at Portland, whose starting shooting guard is NBA All-Star Brandon Roy. Young wouldn't identify which other teams called about Matthews, who was undrafted last year out of Marquette University.

"But more than three called within the first 15 minutes," the agent said. "That definitely made Wesley smile."

Apparently none, though, made an immediate offer.

"Wesley knows it's not going to happen overnight, and let all the big guys go where they may," Young said. "Once the dust settles, I think more teams will be able to put things together."

The Jazz, Young added, "have first shot, and they have last shot, so we'll see what happens."

KORVER UPDATE: The New York Post reported Thursday that the New York Knicks "have interest" in veteran Jazz shooting guard Kyle Korver as a fallback plan.

Said the Post report: "With $34 million in cap space, the Knicks have enough room for (Phoenix's Amare) Stoudemire and (Washington's Mike) Miller, with possibly room to sign another player such as Boston's Ray Allen or Kyle Korver. This would fall into Plan B-minus after Plan A (LeBron James plus a max star) and Plan B (Atlanta's Joe Johnson plus Stoudemire)."

New Jersey and San Antonio also are thought to have interest in Korver, an unrestricted free agent who was Matthews' backup and the NBA's leading 3-point shooter last season.

The Jazz contacted Korver's camp Thursday and haven't ruled out re-signing him, but for now, chances of that happening seem remote.

HAYWOOD, EVANS SIGNED: As expected, the Jazz on Thursday signed 2010 first-round draft choice Gordon Hayward to his rookie contract.

The deal with the Butler University swingman is thought to be worth nearly $4.9 million over two seasons, with separate team options for seasons 3 and 4.

The Jazz also announced that they've signed second-round draft choice Jeremy Evans, a forward from Western Kentucky, as well.

It's believed Evans' contract is not guaranteed.

INTEREST IN MORROW: Yahoo.com identified Utah — along with San Antonio, Boston, Portland, the Los Angeles Clippers and the Los Angeles Lakers — as showing "interest" in Golden State restricted free agent sharpshooter Anthony Morrow.

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