Wright to 76ers, Jack to Warriors
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP)
The Hornets received the draft rights to Edin Bavcic of Bosnia and Herzegovina from the Sixers in a salary-slashing move that clears space in a crowded backcourt. Philadelphia also acquired center Darryl Watkins from New Orleans.
Bavcic was acquired by the Sixers in a trade with Toronto in 2006 and is expected to remain in Europe next season.
The original proposed trade had the Warriors receiving Bavcic for Wright about 24 hours earlier. Instead, the Hornets hopped in the mix to acquire Bavcic — and become the team to shed salary — while handing the Warriors the veteran guard they have wanted this offseason to play alongside Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson.
"I guess that tells you how quickly things move in this league," Warriors general manager Bob Myers said by phone. "I think we're much happier with what is in place tonight than what was in place yesterday. But what was in place yesterday gave us flexibility. Tonight our team got better. Immediately got better."
The move will clear about $5.5 million in cap space for New Orleans, which is expected to match Phoenix's four-year, $58 million offer to restricted free agent Eric Gordon. The trade gives the Hornets more money to sign a center and also allows rookie combo guard Austin Rivers, the 10th overall pick out of Duke in last month's NBA draft, to see more playing time next season.
"This is difficult because Jarrett is a hard worker and his leadership on and off the court will be missed," Hornets general manager Dell Demps said. "This trade presents an opportunity for our young core to continue to develop."
The trade took more than a day to complete because of a series of other moves that paved the way for the complicated deal.
The Sixers used the amnesty clause on Elton Brand and the $18.1 million he's owed in the final season of a five-year contract — a move that had to happen for the Wright trade to go through.
Philadelphia also agreed to a two-year deal with forward Lavoy Allen, who averaged 4.1 points and 4.2 rebounds in his rookie season. The Sixers also signed center Spencer Hawes and agreed to a one-year deal with veteran swingman Nick Young, whose arrival allowed the team to part ways with reserve guard Lou Williams.
"We're very happy to get a player like Dorell Wright," Sixers president Rod Thorn said. "We think his outside shooting and all-around game will be a great addition to our team and we look forward to having him in Philadelphia."
Wright also becomes the 3-point threat needed after Philadelphia decided to not re-sign Jodie Meeks.
The 6-foot-9 Wright is due about $4 million in the final year of his contract — coincidentally negotiated by Myers, who is Wright's former agent. With so many one-year deals, the Sixers are clearly aiming to have plenty of money available to deal in the 2013 free agent market.
Now they also have a player who can make an immediate impact.
Wright averaged 16.4 points and started all 82 games during the 2010-11 season. He led the league in 3-pointers made (194) and finished third in voting for the NBA's Most Improved Player award behind Kevin Love and LaMarcus Aldridge.
But his playing time slipped under rookie coach Mark Jackson and so did his performance. Wright averaged 10.3 points and started 61 of 66 games during the lockout-shortened season.
After the Warriors selected small forwards Harrison Barnes seventh overall and Draymond Green at No. 35 in the draft, it became clear Wright's time with the Warriors was nearing an end. Golden State also has Richard Jefferson under contract for two more seasons and is hoping to re-sign restricted free agent Brandon Rush — likely using the money Wright freed up.
Jack averaged careers highs with 15.6 points and 6.3 assists last season and could challenge for the starting shooting guard spot held by Thompson, the Warriors' 11th overall pick in 2011. Jack also gives the Warriors some depth with the often-injured Curry recovering from his latest surgery on his right ankle.
"We feel like we solidified our backcourt," Myers said. "We've looked at him for a while from afar and never thought we'd have a chance to acquire him, never thought we'd be able to put something together to get it done."