- Associated Press - Thursday, December 15, 2011

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J, (AP) - The Nets signed free-agent forward Shawne Williams away from the rival Knicks on Thursday.

Williams, a 6-9 forward, played in 64 games for New York and posted career-best averages of 7.1 points and 3.7 rebounds in 20.7 minutes per game.

“Shawne is a versatile player who will add a needed dimension to our frontcourt,” Nets general manager Billy King said. “He can play inside as well as shoot the 3, and is a welcome addition to our roster.”

The Nets also waived veteran forward Travis Outlaw and signed veteran free agent forward Ime Udoka.

Outlaw was designated New Jersey’s amnesty player in a move that should take roughly $7 million off the Nets’ salary cap. The moves came a day after the Nets’ bid to acquire Dwight Howard of Orlando fell apart.

Outlaw was signed to a five-year, $35 million contract last summer and appeared in all 82 games, starting 55. He averaged 9.2 points and 4.0 rebounds. The 8-year veteran has played in 482 NBA regular season games with the Trail Blazers, Clippers and Nets, averaging 9.5 points and 3.5 rebounds.

Udoka is a journeyman who has played for five teams in his seven-year NBA career, with his most recent stop being a 20-game stint in San Antonio last season where he had 14 points and 19 rebounds in 130 minutes of action.

Udoka has career averages of 5.2 points and 2.9 rebounds in 316 games. The undrafted Portland State product also has played for the Lakers, Knicks, Trail Blazers and Kings.

New Jersey posted a 24-48 record last season.

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