Jazz, Kings, Grizzlies complete deal

Updated: August 2, 2005, 3:06 PM ET
Associated Press

The Sacramento Kings acquired guard Bonzi Wells from the Memphis Grizzlies on Tuesday in a long-anticipated trade for guard Bobby Jackson and center Greg Ostertag.

The Grizzlies then traded Ostertag to the Utah Jazz for guard Raul Lopez, forward Kirk Snyder and center Curtis Borchardt.

Wells averaged 11.3 points and 3.3 rebounds for Memphis last season, but the controversial guard was removed from the Grizzlies' playoff roster during the club's first-round playoff loss to Phoenix after clashing with coach Mike Fratello.

Wells, a seventh-year pro, also found trouble during his first five NBA seasons in Portland, but will get a fresh start in Sacramento. A proven scorer who averaged 17 points per game for the Trail Blazers in 2001-02, Wells is expected to be the Kings' starting shooting guard, replacing departing free agent Cuttino Mobley.

"We're excited about the opportunity to get Bonzi and rebuild our backcourt with some size, length and versatility," said Geoff Petrie, the Kings' president of basketball operations. "We really look forward to him coming in and having a terrific year and adding a dimension to our team that's different from what we've had before."

Earlier in the offseason, Memphis exercised an $8 million option on Wells for next season.

Jackson, the NBA's top sixth man in 2003, was the Kings' most popular and versatile player when healthy in recent years, but the point guard has missed big parts of the last three seasons because of injuries.

He averaged 12 points, 3.4 rebounds and 2.4 assists last season, but sat out 51 games with a torn ligament in his wrist, returning late in the regular season. He missed 21 games with a broken left hand during the 2002-03 season, then missed 28 of the Kings' final 29 regular-season games and the 2004 playoffs with a strained abdominal muscle.

He will make just $3.375 million in the final season of a six-year deal he signed with the Kings in 2000.

"Bobby is not only a talented player and great competitor, but he is an individual of tremendous character," said Jerry West, the Grizzlies' president of basketball operations. "He will be a veteran leader and an explosive scorer."

Ostertag, a 10-year veteran who played sparingly in Sacramento, is back with the Jazz, where he spent his first nine NBA seasons.

With Jackson's departure, Mike Bibby and Peja Stojakovic are the only Kings who were with the club just two seasons ago. Petrie has overhauled the roster in the last year with the departures of Chris Webber, Doug Christie, Mobley and Jackson.

The Jazz gave up on three youngsters to re-acquire Ostertag, who will make $4.4 million next season. Borchardt, Snyder and Lopez all failed to live up to expectations with the Jazz.


Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press