Raptors trade Fred Jones to Blazers for Juan Dixon
The Portland Trail Blazers today acquired guard/forward Fred Jones, a former Oregon Duck, and future considerations from the Toronto Raptors in exchange for guard Juan Dixon. As part of the trade, Jones has agreed not to exercise the player option year of his contract, meaning his current deal will expire at the end of the 2007-08 season.
“It’s always fun to add such a talented player with such strong local connections to our roster”, said Trail Blazers President/General Manager Steve Patterson. “Fred is a versatile athlete with high character and a great track record of community involvement and we think he fits perfectly into the culture we’ve been cultivating here in Portland.”
Jones has played in 39 games this season with nine starts and is averaging 7.6 points and 1.4 assists per game. He joined the Raptors this past summer as a free agent after four seasons with the Indiana Pacers, who drafted Jones in the first round (14th overall pick) in the 2002 NBA Draft, three spots ahead of Dixon that year.
For his career, the 6-2, 225-pound Gresham, Ore., native has played in 284 games with 28 starts, averaging 7.7 points, 2.1 assists and 2.2 rebounds per game. Winner of the 2004 Sprite Rising Stars Slam Dunk Championship at All-Star Weekend, Jones counts career highs of 31 points (twice), 10 rebounds, eight assists and five steals.
“We want to wish Juan the best and we’re looking forward to watching him help Toronto in the playoffs,” said Patterson. “Juan is a skilled shooter and always willing to put in the time on the floor and in the weight room to make his game even better and we appreciate the work ethic he helped instill in our younger players.”
Dixon, 6-foot-3, 165 pounds, averaged career highs of 12.3 points, 2.3 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 25.3 minutes last season with the Blazers. He led Portland in scoring 14 times, including a season-best 28 points on two occasions. He posted double-figure totals in 48 contests, topping 20-plus points 13 times.
Dixon has averaged 8.9 points, 1.5 rebounds, 1.5 assists and 22.6 minutes in 55 games this season. He has scored in double figures in 24 outings, with a season high of 21 points at Denver on February 2 and versus Sacramento on January 12.
A first-round selection (17th overall) by the Washington Wizards in 2002, Dixon has appeared in 307 career regular season games, averaging 9.3 points, 2.0 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 20.7 minutes. He averaged 11.4 points, 1.3 rebounds and 2.6 assists in 10 postseason contests with the Wizards in 2005. He spent his first three seasons with Washington before signing with Portland as a free agent August 4, 2005.
Dixon was named first-team All-American by Associated Press after leading Maryland to the 2002 NCAA Championship. He was named Most Outstanding Player of the NCAA Final Four and 2002 Atlantic Coast Conference Player of the Year. He finished his collegiate career as the school’s all-time leading scorer with 2,269 points.
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