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Reports: Jared Dudley interested in Boston, Sacramento, Charlotte, Atlanta

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NBA: Playoffs-Brooklyn Nets at Philadelphia 76ers Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

So, this probably qualifies as the first real free agent news of the summer (or spring).

According to the Boston Globe, Jared Dudley would like to return to Boston where he played college ball.

Free agency begins July 1 and there is already one player interested in joining the Celtics. Former Boston College swingman Jared Dudley, who enjoyed a solid bounce-back year for the Brooklyn Nets as a team leader, agitator, and 3-pointer shooter, is interested in returning to his college city to play for the Celtics, according to a league source. Dudley turns 34 in July and played in 59 games for the Nets, starting 25. He shot 35.1 percent from the 3-point line, his worst clip since his rookie season but still respectable.

Although has said he loves the Nets organization and New York (he’s the only Nets player who lives in Manhattan), Dudley also has noted that this is a business.

Sactown Royalty, our Kings sister site on SB Nation, reported Friday that Dudley might also be interested in joining Sacramento as well as the Hornets and Hawks. Aykis 16 wrote of a Dudley appearance on the Tampering podcast...

It was interesting to hear his take on free agency and the NBA in general. He mentioned the Kings as a potential destination for him specifically because they’re a young team that’s close to the playoffs that has money to spend (He also mentioned Charlotte and Atlanta).

The 6’7” forward, who played the 3, 4 and even the occasional 5 in Kenny Atkinson’s system, was acquired from the Suns along with a lightly protected second rounder in July for Darrell Arthur, who the Nets had acquired in an earlier trade with Denver. Arthur was diagnosed with a career-ending injury in October and is out of the league.

Although there were rumors the Nets planned to buy out Dudley, he quickly quashed them. And by the time the playoffs rolled around, he had become a favorite of fans and in the Nets locker room. His generosity —providing random fans free tickets on Twitter— and his openness via social media —again Twitter, combined with some clutch play made the 33-year-old a popular player. His high point may very well have been Game 4 of the first round of the playoffs when after Joel Embiid whacked Jarrett Allen, Dudley physically confronted Embiid leading a scrum that ended with him and Jimmy Butler ejected and fined.

Dudley played for years at Boston College. During the 2004–05 season, he helped the Eagles start 20–0, finishing 25–5. Dudley was a four-year starter for the Eagles, and played in every BC game in his first three years. Dudley was voted the ACC Player of the Year for 2007 and was a second team All-American.

Dudley made $9.5 million last season, the last of a three-year, $30 million.