I’m expecting to get word on a free agent signing by the Clippers later tonight… Check back in a couple hours.

UPDATE: Sorry, we had some technical difficulties with the blog last night. Not sure what happened –I couldn’t even sign in — but we’re back up and running. I got word from a source around 10 p.m. that the signing I was expecting wasn’t done yet. Not sure what the hang up is, but these things tend to take time. I’ll let you all know as soon as I get word.

Clippers reacquire Jason Hart

Sorry to be a little slow in posting this. I was away from the computer for an hour or so. But the Clippers today re-acquired Jason Hart from the Utah Jazz in exchange for Brevin Knight.

“We are glad to have Jason back with us,” general manager Elgin Baylor said. “He played an important role for us when he was here previously, and we think he will be a valuable component this time as well.”

The 6-3, 180 pound Hart played a part of the 2006-07 season with the Clippers before signing with Utah last offseason. In those 23 games, Hart averaged nine points and four assists.

What’s next

I had a conversation today with some of the Clippers brass about the rest of the summer, and what moves the team does or does not make. Basically, everything depends on what happens with Kelenna Azubuike. Golden State has until Friday to match the offer sheet he signed with the Clippers last Thursday.

If Golden State lets Azubuike walk, the Clippers will have no more cap space and would need to fill out the roster with league minimum guys.

If Golden State matches the three-year, $9 million dollar offer, then the Clippers would still have about $3 million in salary cap space, and I got the distinct impression they planed to make use of it.

One issue that will probably remain unresolved for a while is the status of Shaun Livingston. The team has expressed a desire to re-sign him, but had to renounce his rights because he carried a $13 million salary cap hold.

“I’ve had discussions with Shaun’s agent recently,” coach Mike Dunleavy said. “We love Shaun, but with his injury, we had to renounce him because he was on the books for 13 million dollars. It’s just the way of the cap.

“But we’d still like to re-sign him. Right now, he’s not cleared to do anything but play 1-on-1. We’d like to see the rehabilitation through, and then give him an opportunity to be a Los Angeles Clipper.”

So just how close were the Clippers to signing Josh Smith?

Said Clippers coach Mike Dunleavy:

“We were ready to sign one of the free agents (Smith) to an offer sheet. I’d met with Mr. Sterling the night before to plan it out, but we told him we’re going to take one more shot at Denver.

“We let them know we were about to pull the trigger and there’s a good chance we can get this guy and this opportunity is going to go away for you. They came back and said, `they’d do it.’ I’ve got a bad knee, but I jumped pretty high after that.”