ORLANDO, Fla. — The exodus from Utah continues for last season's Jazz players.
Earl Watson joined Paul Millsap and DeMarre Carroll (Atlanta) and Al Jefferson (Charlotte) in agreeing to terms on a deal with a new team. The 34-year-old Watson will sign a one-year contract — reportedly for $1.4 million — to play with Damian Lillard and the Portland Trail Blazers in 2013-14.
As Jazz fans wished Watson well via Twitter on Saturday night, the veteran point guard took to social media in a classy way to show his gratitude to people he'd forged good relationships with the past three years, including Jerry Sloan, Tyrone Corbin, Kevin O'Connor, Dennis Lindsey, the Miller family, local beat writers and "the amazing fans!"
Added Watson: "Thank you, thank you, thank you!"
Watson's role declined from 2010-11 when he was Deron Williams' main backup. This past season, his production was hampered by lingering knee issues and a sports hernia he didn't realize he had.
Only three Jazz players from the 2012-13 team remain free agents — Mo Williams, Jamaal Tinsley and Randy Foye.