Rockets trade Rudy Gay, Stromile Swift to Grizzlies for Shane Battier
Houston Rockets General Manager Carroll Dawson announced today that the team has acquired forward/guard Shane Battier from the Memphis Grizzlies in exchange for forward Stromile Swift and the draft rights to Connecticut forward Rudy Gay, who was selected by the Rockets with the eighth overall selection in the 2006 NBA Draft.
“We are very excited to be able to add Shane to our roster,” said Dawson on Battier. “Shane is a proven winner on and off the court and he will have an immediate impact on our team this season. We believe he will be a great fit playing alongside Tracy McGrady and Yao Ming for many years to come. He is a very good defender who has also been a very consistent perimeter shooter throughout his college and pro career.”
Battier (6-8, 220, Duke) has averaged 10.5 points, 4.8 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 1.28 steals and 1.00 blocks in 396 games (279 starts) with Memphis. A member of the 2001-02 NBA All-Rookie First Team, Battier finished his career with the Grizzlies ranked first in franchise history in steals (507), third in blocks (418), fourth in points (4,160) and fifth in rebounds (1,908). In 2005-06, Battier averaged 10.1 points, 5.3 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 1.14 steals and a career-best 1.41 blocks over 81 starts. A consistent shooter throughout his career, Battier made a career-best 48.8 percent of his FG attempts last season and boasts a 45.4 percent mark for his career. He also ranked sixth in the NBA in steals-per-turnover ratio (1.02; 92 steals, 90 turnovers). This past season, Battier had a season-high four steals at Houston (12/3/05) and pulled down a season-best 13 rebounds vs. Toronto (2/21/06). He missed his only game of the season vs. the L.A. Lakers (12/14/05) with a sprained right index finger. The 6-foot-8 forward/guard also notched a career-high-tying five blocks three times on the season. On March 5th, he was added to the 24-man roster for the 2006-2008 USA Basketball Men's Senior National Team program where he will compete for a chance to represent the United States in international competitions under his former college head coach Mike Krzyzewski.
“I am very excited about the opportunity to come play in Houston,” added Battier. “I view this as a new and exciting challenge for me personally. The opportunity to play alongside perennial All-Stars like Tracy and Yao doesn’t come along that often. I’m looking forward to coming in here and getting to work with my new teammates and the coaching staff to get this team back to where it belongs—in the NBA playoffs.”
Selected by the Grizzlies in the first round (6th overall) of the 2001 NBA Draft, the five-year NBA veteran set his career high with 33 points vs. Toronto (3/4/05). In his third season with Memphis in 2003-04, Battier finished first in the NBA in steals-per-turnover ratio (1.80). Battier’s best statistical season in the NBA came as a rookie in 2001-02, as he averaged 14.4 points, 5.4 rebounds, 2.8 assists, 1.55 steals and 1.04 blocks in 78 starts. He also earned NBA Western Conference got milk? Rookie of the Month for December of that season.
Battier finished his collegiate career tied for eighth on Duke’s all-time scoring list with 1,984 points. He also ranked first all-time at Duke in career steals (266), second in blocked shots (254) and third in 3-point percentage (.416). A consensus choice as National Player of the Year as a senior, Battier was one of four players in NCAA history to have over 1,500 points, 500 rebounds, 200 steals, 200 assists and 200 blocked shots in a career. He also received the Naismith and Wooden Awards while leading Duke to the 2001 NCAA National Championship.
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