Timberwolves Sign J.J. Barea

December 14, 2011

The Minnesota Timberwolves bolstered their guard corps today by signing free-agent José Juan Barea. Terms of the contract were not disclosed.

"We are excited to add J.J. Barea to our team," said David Kahn, Timberwolves President of Basketball Operations. "His experience, leadership capabilities and all-around play should help us immensely this coming season and beyond."

An undersized point guard who can routinely break down defenses with his penetration ability, Barea figures to add some much needed playmaking and scoring punch to Minnesota's backcourt.

With former lottery pick Ricky Rubio on the roster, Barea likely will be utilized in a sixth man role as a scoring threat on the 'Wolves second unit. At times however, Barea and Rubio can be expected to play together, as the 6'4" Rubio is tall enough to guard 2's while Barea defends the opposing point guard.

Barea, 27, played in 81 games for Dallas in 2010-11, averaging 9.5 points and 3.9 assists in 20.5 minutes per contest. The 6-0 guard also appeared in 21 playoff games for the World Champion Mavericks, averaging 8.9 points and 3.4 assists in 18.6 minutes.

Barea tallied 22 points and eight assists in the Mavs' 2011 Western Conference Semifinals-clinching win over the Los Angeles Lakers. He started the final three games of the 2011 NBA Finals versus Miami, scoring 17 points in Game 4 and 15 points (on 7-for-12 shooting) in the deciding Game 5.

Barea has played five seasons in the NBA, all with Dallas, and owns career averages of 7.1 points, 1.8 rebounds and 2.9 assists in 315 games.

By Staff of The Daily Sports Herald

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