When 32-year-old Andrei Kirilenko opted out of a $10.2 million contract with the Minnesota Timberwolves, many assumed it was so he could put himself in position to earn one more large contract.
Kirilenko, in fact had other goals and intentions, and signed a two-year deal with the Brooklyn Nets because he wanted to win.
Amid speculation he joined the Nets because of some backroom deal with the Nets Russian owner, Mikhail Prokhorov, Kirilenko says “he’s in Brooklyn to win a title.”
”No,” Kirilenko said Thursday during a conference call. ”Those type of rumors I can’t control. I guess it comes from the history because of Russia, the KGB. I don’t know what to think. I played 12 years in the NBA. It makes it look funny for those type of accusations.”
”I play in NBA for 12 years and I think there is a time to take a shot to win a title,” Kirilenko said.
Kirilenko averaged 12.4 points, 5.7 rebounds, 1.5 steals a game last season for the Timberwolves, and can still play some tenacious defense.