The Phoenix Suns completed a trade with the Washington Wizards today, acquiring forward Kelly Oubre Jr. (pronounced OOH-bray) and guard Austin Rivers in exchange for forward Trevor Ariza.
“Trevor has been one of the most effective, efficient and versatile players at his position for over a decade,” said Wizards President Ernie Grunfeld. “We are obviously very familiar with the leadership and experience he brings as one of the league’s most respected professionals and look forward to welcoming him back to the team.”
Ariza (6-8, 215) returns to Washington for a second stint with the Wizards. He averaged 12.3 points, 5.6 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 1.5 steals while shooting .393 from three-point range with the team from 2012-2014, helping the team advance to the second round of the playoffs in 2013-14. The 15-year veteran has averaged 10.5 points, 4.8 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 1.5 steals while shooting .353 from three-point range in 968 career games (667 starts) over 15 seasons with Phoenix, Houston, Washington, New Orleans, the L.A. Lakers, Orlando and New York. He has averaged 9.9 points, 5.6 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 1.5 steals in 26 games (all starts) with the Suns this season.
Over the past 10 seasons (entering the 2018-19 season), Ariza had 1,304 three-pointers and 30.5 defensive win shares (estimate of number of wins contributed by a player due to his defense), joining LeBron James and Kevin Durant as the only players to post those numbers. He has also averaged at least 2.0 three-pointers and 1.5 steals in each of the past five seasons (coming into the 2018-19 season), joining Stephen Curry and James Harden as the only players to do so. Dating back to 2008-09, Ariza has the third-most steals (1,245) in the NBA behind only Chris Paul and Russell Westbrook and he joins Harden and Westbrook as the only players with at least 4,000 points, 2,000 rebounds, 800 assists and 600 steals since 2013.
Ariza brings extensive playoff experience to the Wizards, averaging 10.3 points, 5.0 rebounds, 1.9 assists and 1.4 steals while shooting .367 from three-point range in 102 postseason contests (90 starts). He helped lead the Lakers to the 2009 NBA championship, averaging 11.3 points, 4.2 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 1.3 steals while shooting .476 from three-point range in 23 games (all starts) and helped lead the Rockets to the Western Conference Finals in both 2015 and 2018, starting all 34 games in those combined playoff runs.
Oubre, a 6-7, 205-pound forward, is in his fourth NBA season and posting career highs by scoring 12.9 points per game and shooting 43.3 percent from the field this season. He has played particularly well of late, scoring at least 20 points in three of his last six games and averaging 17.7 points (51.4 FG%, 40.7 3FG%, 79.2 FT%) over this six-game stretch. Oubre scored a season-high 23 points last Monday at Indiana then scored 20 last Wednesday vs. Boston, giving him consecutive 20-point games for the first time in his career.
For his career, the 23-year-old has averaged 8.2 points, 3.5 rebounds and 0.8 steals in 252 games (32 starts) all with the Wizards. He has also appeared in 18 career playoff games, averaging 7.0 points in 18.4 minutes. Over the last two seasons, Oubre is averaging 12.1 points, 4.5 rebounds, 1.5 three-pointers and 1.0 steals while shooting 81.4 percent from the free throw line in 110 games.
The left-hander was initially the 15th overall pick of the 2015 NBA Draft by Atlanta before being traded to Washington on draft night. He played one season at the University of Kansas and was named to the Big 12 All-Newcomer Team after averaging 9.3 points and 5.0 rebounds while helping the Jayhawks to a Big 12 regular season title. A native of New Orleans, prior to the Wizards’ games at the Pelicans in each of the past two seasons Oubre has presented 10 high school students from the New Orleans area with scholarships.
“We commend Kelly on the growth and development he showed within our system to become a solid rotation player as well as the work he did in the D.C. community during his time as a Wizard,” said Grunfeld. “We also appreciate Austin’s contributions during his brief time with us and wish them both the best as they continue their careers.”
Rivers, a 6-4, 200-pound guard, is in his seventh NBA season and averaging 7.2 points, 2.4 rebounds and 2.0 assists in 29 games with the Wizards this season. For his career, the 26-year-old has averaged 9.3 points, 2.4 assists and 2.1 rebounds in 437 games (132 starts) with the New Orleans Hornets/Pelicans, Clippers and Wizards. Initially the 10th overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft by New Orleans, Rivers played one season at Duke University where he averaged 15.5 points.