Cavs add front-court depth, sign Scot Pollard
CLEVELAND -- Scot Pollard promises to lead the Cleveland Cavaliers in bruises and floor burns.
"I'm not a pretty player," he said. "I go in there and do the dirty work. I dive on the floor. I take charges. I set screens. I do a lot of things guys don't like doing. I found my niche and I'm sticking with it."
Pollard, a free agent known for his ever changing hair and sideburn styles, signed a one-year contract with the Cavaliers, who also traded center Martynas Andriuskevicius to the Chicago Bulls for guard Eddie Basden on Friday.
Financial terms were not available.
Pollard averaged 3.8 points and 4.8 rebounds in 45 games -- 32 starts -- last season for the Indiana Pacers, his third NBA team. The 6-foot-11, 265-pound Pollard will give the Cavs more inside muscle and can provide needed energy along with Anderson Varejao, Cleveland's mop-topped Brazilian.
"I'm a piece to a championship puzzle," Pollard said from his home in Indianapolis.
The 31-year-old has worn his hair in a variety of ways during his NBA career. This summer, he went for a new look.
"I cut all my hair off," he said. "I got tired of taking care of it. Right now, it's a summer cut, but who knows what I might have by the time the season gets here."
Pollard has made 460 career starts and appeared in 57 playoff games since being drafted by Detroit in the first round (19th overall) in 1997.
"Adding Scot to our roster gives us more depth, size, toughness and experience," Cavaliers general manager Danny Ferry said. "We believe Scot can be a valuable contributor to our team as we continue to build a championship level team here in Cleveland."
Pollard played 33 games with the Pistons before being dealt to Atlanta for Christian Laettner. After being waived the Hawks, Pollard signed as a free agent with Sacramento and spent six seasons with the Kings.
He was traded to the Pacers in a three-team deal in 2003. In Indiana, Pollard felt restricted as the Pacers played a slower brand of ball than he was used to with the Kings. He's looking forward to the chance to get out and run with LeBron James and the Cavs.
"This is definitely a team on the upswing," he said. "We've got a chance to be one of the top two or three teams in the East, and we have a legitimate chance to get out of the East."
Andriuskevicius was a project for the Cavaliers, who acquired the 7-foot-2 Lithuanian last year from Orlando for a second-round draft pick and cash. He played just nine minutes in six games for Cleveland, spending most of the season in the NBA's Developmental League.
"Marty is a young and talented kid and he made good strides during the past year, but ultimately this trade puts us in a more flexible position with our roster," Ferry said.
Basden, 23, played in 19 games for the Bulls last season, averaging 2.1 points, 1.5 rebounds.
Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press