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James Jones told Amico Hoops on media day that he hoped to play two more years — last season, and the upcoming one.
But apparently, the now former Cleveland Cavaliers forward got a better offer.
In an announcement released Wednesday, the Phoenix Suns have added Jones to general manager Ryan McDonough’s staff as the vice president of basketball operations.
According to the Suns, Jones will report to McDonough and help oversee all basketball matters, including free agency, the draft and trades.
The Suns also announced an extension to McDonough’s contract.
“I would like to thank [Managing Partner] Robert [Sarver] and his partners for extending my agreement with this great franchise,” McDonough said in the press release. “We have laid the foundation for what we hope will become the next championship caliber Suns team. There is still a lot of work to be done to reach our ultimate goal of bringing a championship to Phoenix so we are thrilled to add James Jones to our staff.”
As for Jones, McDonough added, “James has a wealth of experiences that will greatly benefit our organization. He is a three-time NBA champion and has been one of the top executives with the National Basketball Players Association over the past few years. We welcome ‘Champ’ and his family to our Phoenix Suns family.”
Jones, 36, was one of the NBA’s premier shooters during his 14-year career — and having been a teammate of LeBron James, has made seven straight trips to the NBA Finals with the Miami Heat (four) and Cavs. Three of those trips resulted in championships.
In fact, Jones never played for a team that finished below .500. Only once did he miss the playoffs.
Along with the Cavs and the Heat, Jones played two seasons with the Indiana Pacers (2003-05), two seasons with the Suns (2005-07) and one season with the Portland Trail Blazers (2007-08). He spent six years with the Heat before joining the Cavs.
For his career, Jones averaged 5.2 points and 1.8 rebounds in 15.7 minutes, while shooting a sizzling 40.1 percent on 3-pointers. He finished this past season as a free agent.
Jones is a member of the University of Miami Sports Hall of Fame and was an Academic All-American as a student-athlete.