Tuesday , Jun , 27 , 2006 C.Y. Ellis

Report: Pacers’ Stojakovic opts out of contract

Indianapolis, IN (Sports Network) – Indiana forward Peja Stojakovic
reportedly opted out of his contract on Tuesday, making the three-time All-
Star a free agent.

According to the Indianapolis Star, Stojakovic said during the regular season
that he would become a free agent once the season ended.

Stojakovic, who was scheduled to make $8.2 million next season, can now sign
with any team when the free agent negotiating period begins July 1. Teams can
begin signing players on July 12.

The Pacers traded troubled forward Ron Artest in exchange for Stojakovic on
January 25. He averaged 19.5 points and shot 46 percent from the field in 40
games with the Pacers.

However, Stojakovic missed four of the six games with a right knee injury in
the first round of the playoffs against the New Jersey Nets. The Pacers lost
each game he didn’t play.

Stojakovic averages 18.4 points per game 5.1 rebounds and two assists per game
during his nine-year career with the Pacers and the Kings.

Indiana can sign him for up to six years, while other teams can only sign him
for five due to the NBA Collective Bargaining Agreement.