Pacers deal Johnson to Mavs for Armstrong, 2 others
INDIANAPOLIS -- The Indiana Pacers and Dallas Mavericks completed their second trade of the offseason on Monday, with point guard Anthony Johnson going to the Mavericks in a four-player sign-and-trade deal.
In exchange for Johnson, the Pacers received veteran point guard Darrell Armstrong, swingman Rawle Marshall and forward Josh Powell. A free agent, Armstrong re-signed with Dallas before being dealt, but terms were not disclosed.
The addition of Johnson gives the Mavericks depth and defense in the backcourt. Once the understudy to All-Star Jason Kidd in New Jersey, he moved from starter to reserve in three seasons with Indiana.
Last season, Johnson averaged 9.2 points and 4.3 assists in 75 games as he filled in admirably for oft-injured point guard Jamaal Tinsley. In Indiana's first-round loss to New Jersey, Johnson averaged 20 points, 5.2 assists and 5.0 rebounds, scoring a career-high 40 points in the series finale.
The deal is designed to clear Indiana's logjam at point guard. Tinsley would become the full-time floor general and would be backed up by Sarunas Jasikevicius.
During the NBA Finals, Armstrong talked openly about retirement and the possibility of coaching. He has solid leadership skills and can still play a bit, averaging 2.1 points last season.
"Darrell Armstrong is a good fit, a solid professional, a great guy in the locker room and someone who brings a lot of energy to a team," Pacers president of basketball operations Larry Bird said.
The 6-foot-9 Powell appeared in 37 games in his rookie season, averaging 3.0 points and 2.2 rebounds. The 6-7 Marshall played 23 games and actually started nine as a rookie, averaging 3.1 points and 1.3 rebounds.
"Both Powell and Marshall are young and talented players who possibly can help us and we're excited to take a look at them," Bird said. "Their experience with a championship-caliber team like Dallas last season gives them the mentality of what it takes to win at the highest level."
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