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News » NBA Jefferson shipped to Spurs in trade Bucks acquire Bowen among 3, then deal again

NBA Jefferson shipped to Spurs in trade Bucks acquire Bowen among 3, then deal again

NBA Jefferson shipped to Spurs in trade Bucks acquire Bowen among 3, then deal again
SAN ANTONIO - In a move meant to jimmy open Tim Duncan's championship window just a few more inches, the Spurs on Tuesday obtained swingman Richard Jefferson from Milwaukee as part of a three-team deal that sent longtime defensive whiz Bruce Bowen and forward Kurt Thomas to the Bucks and landed center-forward Fabricio Oberto in Detroit.

In making the deal, the Spurs swapped three of their oldest players for a proven NBA scorer who just celebrated his 29th birthday Sunday.

"He's an athlete," Spurs general manager R.C. Buford said, citing what foremost attracted the team to Jefferson. "There are very few players in the NBA who have played all 82 games over the past two years and scored 20 points a game. Richard is one of them."

In Jefferson, a 6-7 forward entering his ninth season, the Spurs hope to have found a proven fourth scorer and an insurance policy for increasingly brittle star guard Manu Ginobili.

Jefferson averaged 19.6 points per game in 2008-09, his first season with the Bucks after seven with the Nets. He started all 82 games and made 43.9 percent of his shots, including a career-high 39.7 from 3-point range.

Tuesday's deal came to fruition only after talks with New Jersey regarding one of Jefferson's former Nets teammates - eight-time All-Star Vince Carter - came to a halt.

According to an Eastern Conference executive, Bowen, Oberto, Thomas and Roger Mason Jr. had been offered to the Nets in exchange for Carter and the Nets' first-round pick in Thursday's draft. The Spurs balked when the Nets asked for additional considerations, then turned their focus to the Jefferson deal.

To get Jefferson, the Spurs were forced to part with a trio of role players who had carved a special place in the team's hierarchy. In his eight seasons in San Antonio, Bowen, 37, was part of three NBA championship teams, earned seven of his eight all-defensive team nominations and was widely regarded as a pillar of the community.

"I don't know that there's any way you can prepare for it," Bowen said in a news conference at his wife's salon on the Northwest side. "It is a business, but it's hard to take out the personal feelings having been here so long."

Oberto, 34, helped the Spurs win titles in 2005 and 2007. Thomas, 36, quickly became one of the most respected voices in the Spurs' locker room after his arrival from Seattle at the 2008 trade deadline.

The Tilt-A-Whirl does not stop for Bowen and Oberto. Milwaukee plans to waive Bowen. The Pistons, who sent Amir Johnson to the Bucks as part of the deal, have the same fate in store for Oberto.

Both players will become free agents on July 1, eligible to sign with any team. Per league rules, they would have to wait 30 days before re-signing with the Spurs .

In other news

Wolves deal for fifth pick - The Minnesota Timberwolves have agreed to trade guards Randy Foye and Mike Miller to the Washington Wizards for the fifth overall draft pick and three players, according to two NBA officials with knowledge of the deal.

The trade would give Minnesota the fifth and sixth overall selections in Thursday's NBA draft, plus forwards Etan Thomas, Darius Songaila and Oleksiy Pecherov.

Author: Fox Sports
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Added: June 25, 2009


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