Hawks deal Johnson to Brooklyn
The Associated Press
The Hawks have agreed to deal All-Star guard Joe Johnson to the Brooklyn Nets for five players and a draft pick, and Atlanta will send forward Marvin Williams to the Utah Jazz for guard Devin Harris.
A person familiar with the Hawks-nets deal told The Associated Press on Monday night that Atlanta will receive guards Anthony Morrow, Jordan Farmar and DeShawn Stevenson and forwards Jordan Williams and Johan Petro, along with a draft pick Brooklyn received from Houston in a prior deal. The selection only belongs to the Nets if it is not a lottery pick.
The person confirmed the trade on condition of anonymity because it cannot become official until Stevenson signs as a free agent with Brooklyn. Free agents cannot be signed until July 11.
Johnson has four years and $90 million left on his contract and new general manager Danny Ferry decided it was time to shed payroll and rebuild.
The 31-year-old Johnson averaged 18.8 points per game last season, his 11th in the NBA and seventh with Atlanta.
The Nets are hoping to team Johnson with free agent point guard Deron Williams, who they are working to re-sign, in the franchise’s first season in New York City after decades in New Jersey.
Utah CEO Greg Miller acknowledged the deal for former first-round pick Marvin Williams while picking up guard Mo Williams at Salt Lake City International Airport in preparation for Tuesday’s introductory press conference.
The Jazz acquired Mo Williams in a multi-team deal last week that also sent Lamar Odom to the Clippers.
Miller said it was difficult to part with Harris but he was excited by what Mo Williams brings to the team.
Mo Williams said it felt good to be back where he started his career in 2003 and he had always hope to start for his first team.
The Harris-Marvin Williams deal now clears the way for that to happen.
“It’s always unfortunate when we have to let a player go because all of our players work so hard and they’re so invested in helping us win.” Miller said. “And it’s got to be a tough thing for them. I know it is for us. I wish Devin the best in his career.”
Mo Williams, dressed in a red T-shirt, black shorts and a New Orleans Saints cap, arrived in Salt Lake City about 8:30 p.m. MDT.
He only has one year left on his current deal but expressed hope that he could be in Utah long term.
“I’m very excited about a new start for me and a second homecoming,” Williams said Monday night.
Jazz General Manager Kevin O’Connor has called letting Mo Williams leave after just one season “the worst: mistake of his career.
“I know he says that a lot, but at the same time I was a young basketball player at the time,” Mo Williams said. “Obviously he made a decision he thought was best for the organization. I never had a bad taste in my mouth about the organization. I always respected them because they gave me a shot.
“I watched 30 teams pass me in the first round. I always had a part of my heart for the Jazz and I’m glad I’m able to come back and prove my worth to them.”
Harris arrived in Utah in 2011 as part of a blockbuster deal that sent Deron Williams to New Jersey.
But Harris struggled to find his niche with the Jazz, and while he stepped up his game late last season, he still has a career 31.5 percent shooting percentage from beyond the arc.
Harris, 29, is scheduled to make $8.5 million in 2012-13, the final year of his current contract.
Marvin Williams, 29, has averaged 11.5 points for Atlanta in his seven-year career, including 10.2 and 5.2 rebounds last season.
Mo Williams has been an All-Star as recently as 2009, and was part of a Cleveland team that won 66 games with LeBron James and advanced to the Eastern Conference Finals in 2009. He joined the Los Angeles Clippers in 2011.
“I think it’s going to be great for us to have Mo here,” Miller said. “Obviously he competed at the highest level. He knows what it takes to win. . I think he’s going to help us win games.”
Asked if there were more moves to come for the small-market Jazz, Miller said, “I hope so.”
DeBruin reported from Salt Lake City.