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Abdur-Rahim Could Help Nets' Odds

19 July 2005

FLORIDA -- (PRESS RELEASE) -- While certainly not considered a bad team after the acquisition of Vince Carter last season, the Nets still compete in a Conference with the likes of Miami and Eastern Conference Champions Detroit. With Larry Brown reportedly stepping down as the Pistons head coach, New Jersey can hone in exclusively on the Miami Heat and Mr. Shaq. Realistically, of course, it is anybody's conference to win.

At press time, New Jersey was listed with +1300 odds to win the 2006 Eastern Conference at , an online betting firm that trades on the Australian Stock Exchange. Miami featured odds of +200. This translates into the potential for a $1300 payout for every $100 bet should New Jersey take the Eastern Conference.

BetWWTS bookmakers early odds on the 2006 Eastern Conference Championship indicate that - aside from Miami - Cleveland, Detroit and Indiana all have better odds of winning than New Jersey.

But that may all change with the addition of Shareef Abdur-Rahim, who has averaged 19 points per game and 8.1 rebounds per game for his career.

As reported by Chad Ford of ESPN, a team source said the Nets are very close to an agreement with Shareef Abdur-Rahim on a six year contract worth roughly $38 million.

To make the deal work under cap rules, the Portland Trail Blazers, who own Abdur-Rahim's rights, would have to agree to sign him to the contract and then trade him to the Nets using a $5 million trade exception that the Nets own. In return, the Nets would send a future first round pick to the Blazers.

If the Nets are unable to get the Blazers to agree to a sign-and-trade, Abdur-Rahim has agreed to sign with the Nets for their mid-level exception at five years for about $28 million, according to the team source. So, either way, it looks like the Nets will get their hands on Abdur-Rahim.

Vegas oddsmakers and online bookmakers may be slow to react since their focus this time of year is on other sporting events, not the NBA.

Two big announcements made on Monday have potential implications on both sides of the spectrum. Detroit's loss of Brown would be viewed as a negative while New Jersey's acquisition of Shareef Abdur-Rahim is certainly seen as a positive.

Abdur-Rahim might not be quite the same caliber of player as a Kenyon Martin, who the Nets traded away for next to nothing prior to last season. There is no doubt, however, he would fill in a void that not only allows for rest of Jason Kidd but also helps to make for a "happy" Jason Kidd.

While the organization is not willing to admit it, they are all about satisfying Kidd.

Current future betting odds on the New Jersey Nets may still hold even better value should The Nets keep adding more quality players, assuming they land Abdur-Rahim at the mid-level exception.

ESPN's Ford points out that the next signing could be Kenyon Dooling.

Should the Nets win the Eastern Conference title, the only thing stopping them from going all the way and walking off with an NBA Championship title is - well - The Western Conference. New Jersey does have

NBA Finals experience and anything can happen, even if beating the Spurs seems improbable right now.

And what are the current odds of New Jersey winning an NBA Championship?

Publicly traded on the London AIM, has the Nets listed with 40 to 1 odds. Should New Jersey win the 2006 NBA Championship, players like Abdur-Rahim, Jason Kidd and Vince Carter walk away with rings while smart sports bettors walk off with $4000 for every $100 they wagered.

These odds were only available at press time and certainly will not last, which is why decided to alert its millions of faithful readers worldwide immediately after learning of this immanent key player acquisition.

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