The Phoenix Suns have signed free-agent forward Matt Barnes to a one-year contract, the club announced yesterday.

“We’re excited to add a player of Matt’s caliber to our roster,” said Suns President of Basketball Operations and General Manager Steve Kerr.  “He has a chance to have a big impact on our team.  His athleticism and versatility at both ends of the court will be important for us along with his playoff experience.”

The 6-7, 226-pound forward joins the Suns after a two-season stint with the Golden State Warriors in which he averaged 8.3 points, 4.5 rebounds and 2.0 assists in 149 games in 2006-07 and 2007-08.  Barnes enjoyed a career year with the Warriors in 2006-07, averaging a personal-best 9.8 points, 4.6 rebounds and 2.1 assists during the regular season.  The 28-year-old Barnes played a key role in Golden State’s historic upset of the top-seeded Dallas Mavericks in the first round of the 2007 NBA Playoffs, tallying 11.1 points, 5.7 rebounds and 2.4 assists in 11 games.

The UCLA product is a career 43.8-percent shooter from the field, including 32.4 percent from three-point range.  Barnes shot 33.8 percent from long range the last two seasons with the Warriors, where he made 159 of his 169 career three-pointers.

Barnes joins his sixth NBA team after spending time with the L.A. Clippers (2003-04), Sacramento Kings (2004-05), Philadelphia 76ers (2004-05, 2005-06), New York Knicks (2005-06) and Warriors.  He owns career averages of 6.1 points, 3.8 rebounds and 1.5 assists in 286 NBA games.

Originally selected by the Memphis Grizzlies in the second round (46th overall) of the 2003 NBA Draft but traded that day to the Cleveland Cavaliers, Barnes is one of many NBA success stories that began their professional careers in the NBA Development League.  The five-year veteran spent the 2002-03 season with the Fayetteville Patriots of the D-League, where he averaged 9.7 points and 3.3 rebounds in 50 games.

The Santa Clara, California-native attended Del Campo High School in Sacramento.

The Suns’ roster currently stands at 11 players.