Arroyo lost favor in Utah
The trade should be an important one for the Pistons. They have been thin at the point guard position since letting Mike James leave in free agency this summer. Billups and Hunter are really combo guards, so a true point guard should help the team.
Utah's decision to dump Arroyo so quickly is surprising, even given his major falling-out with Jerry Sloan this month. Arroyo has gained a solid rep throughout the league thanks to his play last season and in the Olympics, and he was drawing rave reviews from Sloan in camp for his improvement.
"Carlos looks very good," Sloan told Insider in October. "He's much better than he was a year ago. He's in better shape. He's more confident. ... He came ready to compete, and I think he's capable of having a big year."
What a difference a few months -- plus a preseason injury and Keith McLeod's breakout season -- make. The team seemed to play with more energy when McLeod was in the game. Combine that with what Sloan believed to be Arroyo's questionable work ethic and attitude since his return, and maybe it was inevitable that the two were heading for divorce court.
As for Campbell, expect the Jazz to waive him immediately. Under current rules, only the Bobcats and Nets have the cap room or trade exceptions to pick Campbell up off waivers. If Campbell were to clear waivers, the Pistons would be free to pick him up.
The 6-foot-2 Arroyo will provide depth behind Chauncey Billups and will allow Lindsey Hunter -- in his 12th NBA season -- to play fewer minutes. Arroyo started 71 games and averaged 12.6 points and 5.0 assists last season for the Jazz, but his role diminished this season despite his signing a new contract on July 14. He started 16 of 30 games and averaged 8.2 points and 5.1 rebounds.
"We're excited to add him to our team, because we think Carlos adds great flexibility to our backcourt," said Joe Dumars, Detroit's president of basketball operations.
Though Arroyo has three years and about $12 million left on his contract after this season, Dumars said his deal will not be a factor in the Pistons' hopes of re-signing Ben Wallace and Tayshaun Prince in the future.
Campbell, 36, helped the Pistons win the NBA title over the Los Angeles Lakers last season by slowing down Shaquille O'Neal. But he played in just 21 games this season because of Detroit's three-player frontcourt rotation of Ben Wallace, Rasheed Wallace and Antonio McDyess.
One beneficiary of the trade could be Darko Milicic, who moves up in the big-man rotation with Campbell departing. Milicic, who was drafted second overall in 2003, spent most of his rookie season watching from the bench and had been doing the same this season.
By acquiring Campbell, the Jazz will clear salary-cap space this summer. He signed a two-year, $8.4 million contract with the Pistons before the 2003-04 season.
The 7-footer has averaged 10.5 points and 5.9 rebounds in his career, which started with the Lakers in 1990.
Arroyo, who was not drafted, began his career in Toronto and Denver during the 2001-02 season. The Puerto Rico native's career averages are 7.6 points and 3.5 assists.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
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