Say what you will about whether the Magic want or need Dooling but they did take care of him. They first offered him the contract they gave to Anthony Johnson. It offended Dooling, but at least the Magic gave him the right of first refusal. Now this:
Rod Thorn is about to fill his most glaring vacancy, and now all he have to do is wait for Orlando to do some clerical work. The Nets have an agreement in principle to make a sign-and-trade deal for free agent Keyon Dooling, a combo guard they have pursued for years, and he'll fit right in as a reserve for starters Vince Carter and Devin Harris. "I'm hopeful ... that we can make a trade," was Thorn's closest statement resembling a confirmation Friday night.
An eight-year veteran, Dooling would be acquired by making use of a $3.3 million trade exception the Nets obtained in the Jason Kidd deal last February. That will now be transferred to the Magic, who will prepare a two-year contract that calls for a $3.3 million salary next year and a $3.5 million salary for 2009-10, with a partially-guaranteed third season that will pay him a pittance.
The process is expected to be completed by mid-week, after Orlando prepares the contract and the Nets give the 6-foot-3 Dooling his physical. But the process won't begin until the teams run the trade past the league Monday morning.