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BREAKING NEWS: Wizards sign Hayes to 5 year contract

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--WASHINGTON, D.C.-- The Washington Wizards announced yesterday that they have re-signed swingman Jarvis Hayes to a five year contract through the 2011/2012 season.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but an anonymous Wizards source told Bullets Forever the deal ia for the full mid-level exception.  

The move surprised many pundits, who felt that Washington's mid-level exception would be better served for fellow free agents DeShawn Stevenson and Andray Blatche.  Hayes, who, along with Brendan Haywood and Etan Thomas represent the lone holdovers from the Michael Jordan era, was drafted with the tenth pick in the 2003 NBA Draft.

Wizards general manager Ernie Grunfeld explained that this is an investment in the future rather than the present.

"We really think that Jarvis is going to be a big part of our future.  He really displays lots of energy, and his shot will eventually come back after all these injuries."

Wizards head coach Eddie Jordan is excited about the news.

"I'm really looking forward to coaching Jarvis for the next five years.  He has such a sweet looking stroke, and he provides a lot of energy off our bench."

Hayes has a reputation for being a proficient jump shooter, but he has struggled with that this season.  He is shooting less than 40 percent from the field and 33 percent from three-point territory, and is averaging only 6.3 points per game.  After shooting over 50 percent from the field in his senior season at Georgia, Hayes has yet to shoot over 42 percent from the field in his four-year NBA career.

Hayes says he is looking forward to the opportunity of a new contract.

"Hopefully, this will give me added motivation to overcome my injuries and show what I can really do.  I've shot a lot of shots I know I can make, but just haven't gone down.  Hopefully, they'll start to drop for me in the future."