Jazz deal Giricek, first-round pick for 3-point specialist Korver

Updated: February 22, 2008, 11:32 AM ET
Associated Press

PHILADELPHIA -- Gordan Giricek made peace in Utah, then was sent out of town.

The Jazz traded the disgruntled guard and a conditional first-round pick to Philadelphia for 3-point ace Kyle Korver on Saturday, creating additional salary cap space the 76ers craved.

Kyle Korver

Korver

Gordan Giricek

Giricek

Giricek had fallen out of favor with Jazz coach Jerry Sloan after the two had a heated exchange during a timeout in a Dec. 19 game at Charlotte. The 6-foot-5 reserve guard was ordered to the locker room, was sent home for three games and never played again for the Jazz.

"It's a clean slate," 76ers president Ed Stefanski said. "He was excited to be joining the team."

The deal, though, was more about salary cap flexibility for the Sixers than it was getting a player who could help them this season. Giricek's $4 million contract expires at the end of the season, giving the Sixers about $10 million in cap space for next summer.

Korver was due a little more than $15 million over the final three years of his deal.

"We're probably the only team that has that kind of money," Stefanski said. "We'd like to be a player in the free-agent or trade market this summer. We get in the game by doing this."

The draft pick won't immediately help the Sixers. The first year the Sixers could make the selection is in 2009 and Stefanski said Philadelphia has through 2014 to make the pick. There are different protections for each year, also.

Giricek averaged 4.3 points in 22 games for the Jazz this season and has a career average of 9.8 points in six seasons. His minutes had been cut in Utah and he was dropped from the rotation 13 games into the season. Sloan and general manager Kevin O'Connor met with Giricek before practice Thursday to discuss what happened in Charlotte and the sixth-year player's role on the Jazz.

Now, he'll get a fresh start in Philadelphia.

Korver, the centerpiece of a Sixers billboard off I-95 on the way to the airport, averaged 10 points in 25 games with the 76ers and was their top 3-point threat. Korver played four seasons with Philadelphia, averaging 10.5 points and shooting 42 percent.

"We made a trade which we feel improves our team this year," O'Connor said in a statement.

Korver holds the team record for 3-pointers in a season with 226 in 2004-05.

"I want to thank Kyle for the positive impact he has made on this team and the city of Philadelphia through his play on the court and, even more importantly, his philanthropic efforts off of it," Stefanski said.

Stefanski hasn't ruled out another deal before the Feb. 21 trading deadline. He said plenty of teams asked about the availability of point guard Andre Miller. Miller, obtained last year in the Allen Iverson deal, is having an outstanding year with averages of 16.1 points and 6.2 assists while leading the rebuilding Sixers to a surprising 13-16 record.

"Where we are right now, we have to do more things and add more pieces to this puzzle," Stefanski said. "Are we done? I couldn't answer that question. But we do have chips that people like."

Korver and Giricek each get a quick shot at sticking it to their former teams: The Sixers play Wednesday at Utah.


Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press

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