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Jazz near buyout of Raja Bell; Heat, Lakers, Celtics in mix

Raja Bell

Utah Jazz’s Raja Bell stretches out prior to an NBA basketball scrimmage in Salt Lake City, on Saturday, Dec. 17, 2011. (AP Photo/The Salt Lake Tribune, Jeremy Harmon) DESERET NEWS OUT; LOCAL TV OUT; MAGS OUT


How much does Raja Bell still have in the take at age 36 next season?

That’s the question some contenders will have to ask because Bell is going to be on the market — he has a verbal agreement for a buyout deal with the Utah Jazz, Bell told the Salt Lake Tribune.

“I’ve been given the greenlight and we’ve agreed to terms,” said Bell, who’s set to make $3.4 million this season.

The buyout would make Bell a free agent.

Bell told the Tribune that he has interest in three of the leagues best teams — the Lakers, Heat and Celtics (there may be more as well). Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports reports what Bell really wants to go back to his native Miami.

Bell can still shoot the three (39 percent last season) but his game has slipped the last couple years following some injuries, including his left knee last year. His PER has been 8.2 and 8.3 percent the past couple years. His defense has not been the same.

But for a veteran minimum deal (one year, team option for the second year) it might be worth the risk.