Report: Krstic signs multi-year deal to play in Russia

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There were reports 10 days ago that Russian power CSKA Moscow were going after the Celtics Nenad Krstic.

Turns out they were true. And he accepted.

Krstic has agreed to a two-year deal to play in Russia, A. Sherrod Blakely reports at CSN New England, via the Serbian web site novosti.rs.

The Serbian center started last season with the Thunder then was traded to the Celtics as part of the Kendrick Perkins deal. He was set to be a free agent July 1 but the Celtics had expressed interest in bringing him back for next season.

This may be the first case of a defection to Europe because of the pending lockout. Krstic would have been one of the free agents in limbo, waiting for a deal to be worked out before he could sign. And he was given a real second option, one of Europe’s best teams.

Krstic signing in Russia and the retirement of Shaquille O’Neal leaves Boston with just one center on the roster in Jermaine O’Neal. Finding another one will be a high priority for Danny Ainge this offseason.