Presti also appreciated Mohammed in San Antonio, but could not afford to re-sign him.
Mohammed remained with the Spurs for the season following the championship and made 30 starts, but signed as a free agent with the Detroit Pistons for $5.215 million after making $5.5 million with the Spurs.
Mohammed said he was looking for a long-term deal at the full midlevel exception, which the Pistons offered but the Spurs did not.
“I was looking for more stability with the years,” Mohammed said. “It didn't really come down to a dollar number. It was a little bit more money in Detroit and the years.”
Last June, Mohammed signed a one-year extension with the Thunder for $3.75 million.
One month earlier, he posted his reasons for wanting to remain with the franchise on his Twitter account: “In OKC I have (a) chance 2 compete 4 a Championship, opportunity 2 share what I know (with) a young team, chance 2 learn how 2 run a top notch organization & unbelievable fans ...”