I got this from the Mavericks in an email today at 12:20pm
Art Garcia | Mavs.com
Posted: Feb. 19, 2008
You knew it was coming. You just didn’t know how it was going to get there. Just like one of his trademark passes, the trade of Jason Kidd to the Mavericks was delivered in unexpected fashion.
The eight-time All-Star point guard returns to the franchise of his NBA birth after the seven-player deal with New Jersey was finally consummated Tuesday. After six days of twists and turns, the Mavs dealt Devin Harris, Gana Diop, Trenton Hassell, Moe Ager, Keith Van Horn, a pair of draft picks and cash to acquire Kidd, Malik Allen and Antoine Wright from New Jersey.
The Mavs re-signed Van Horn, who hasn’t played since the 2006 Finals, to make the deal work financially. To make room for Van Horn, rookie forward Nick Fazekas was waived.
The Kidd deal is the latest in a series of blockbusters that have shaken the Western Conference. The Lakers were the first to strike, acquiring Pau Gasol from Memphis. Phoenix followed suit with a high-risk, high-reward swap of Shawn Marion and Marcus Banks for Miami’s Shaquille O’Neal.
The Mavs have insisted that those deals didn’t pressure a response. The addition of Kidd fortifies the point guard position and adds a top-flight distributor to pair with Dirk Nowitzki, Josh Howard and Jason Terry. Kidd is expected to be in uniform when the Mavs (35-18) resume the season Wednesday at Southwest Division-leading New Orleans.
The Mavs haven’t had an All-Star caliber point guard since Steve Nash. Harris, 24, was in the midst of a career-best season (14.4 points and 5.3 assists) before injuring his left ankle in late January.
Kidd, 34, is averaging 11.3 points, 10.4 assists (third in the league) and 8.1 rebounds this season. Allen (6-10, 255) has played for four teams in his seven-year career. The Villanova product has averaged 5.9 points and 3.2 rebounds during that span. Texas A&M product Wright (6-7, 215) adds another swingman to the rotation with Hassell’s departure, and is averaging 7.3 points in 41 games this season.
Diop (7-0, 280) spent his 2 1/2 seasons with the Mavs as part of the center tandem with Erick Dampier. Hassell, a veteran shooting guard acquired during training camp from Minnesota, has played sparingly in his first season in Dallas. Ager, a second-year guard, has shuttled between the Mavs and the NBDL.
Kidd concluded his run with New Jersey by representing the Nets on the Eastern Conference team in Sunday’s All-Star Game. Besides his obvious on-court gifts, Kidd’s mental toughness and leadership are qualities coveted by the Mavs front office. He has 99 career triple-doubles, third all-time.
Kidd was drafted by the Mavs with the second overall pick in 1994. He split Rookie of the Year honors with Grant Hill, but his stay in Dallas was short. Kidd was traded to Phoenix the day after Christmas in 1996 for Michael Finley, Sam Cassell and A.C. Green. The Suns dealt him to New Jersey in the 2001 offseason. He led the Nets to the Finals in 2002 and ’03