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Old 09-13-2006, 10:11 PM   #1
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Default Sides Still Apart On Diaw Extension

Sides still apart on Diaw extension

As far as NBA contract extensions go, the remaining six weeks that the Suns and Boris Diaw have to negotiate one is close to an eternity.

When the Suns were able to sign Leandro Barbosa to his five-year extension Aug. 4, the early agreement was a league anomaly. If a player's extension is not an obvious maximum deal, these matters often linger closer to the Oct. 31 deadline.

And although talks remain pleasant and positive with Diaw, there is nothing imminent, especially with the national team commitments Diaw and Suns Executive Vice President and General Manager Mike D'Antoni had this summer. advertisement

The working gap is about $2 million annually on a five-year deal, with the Suns willing to pay Diaw $8 million per year and Diaw seeking about $10 million per year. It looks like the difference between Drew Gooden's new three-year, $23 million contract or Chris Wilcox's new three-year, $24 million deal and the $60 million over six years that Nene got in July. Dallas' negotiations with Josh Howard may be a better comparison, although some argue that Diaw would not thrive anywhere but Phoenix because of D'Antoni's system.

"Every situation is different," Diaw said from Africa, where he is currently on a safari after participating in last week's Basketball Without Borders in South Africa. "I don't think it's comparable, because I don't play on the same team or the same way."

The Suns won't see Diaw again until he meets them in Italy, where they will arrive for camp on Sept. 30. If Diaw does not sign an extension by Halloween, he will be a restricted free agent next summer. The Suns would still be able to match any other team's offer.

"I don't know if we're close," Diaw said. "They know I like the city and the team, and I know they like me. The system fits me. We just have to work it out. It might go to next summer. I'm not sure yet."
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