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Anti Hero 07-25-2012 07:05 PM

Suns Trade Robin Lopez and Hakim Warrick In Three Team Deal

The Suns have reached an agreement with New Orleans and Minnesota on a three-way trade that will bring third-year swingman Wesley Johnson and a first-round pick to Phoenix and send center Robin Lopez and power forward Hakim Warrick to New Orleans.

The first-round pick is via Minnesota but whether there are restrictions such as lottery protections on the pick is not yet known.

The trade has not been completed because of complicated procedural obligations but is expected to eventually get done.

Lopez, the Suns' 15th pick in 2008, will have to sign first with Phoenix as a restricted free agent to consummate the deal.

Lopez was a free-agency priority for Phoenix this month but had a steep asking price approaching $7 million a year initially.

He lost his starting role to Marcin Gortat at the end of the 2010-11 season and has had to deal with foot, knee and back injuries.

Lopez averaged 5.4 points, 3.3 rebounds and 0.7 blocks in 14 minutes per game last season while shooting a career-worst 46 percent.

Warrick was unable to hold down a rotation spot in the past two seasons and would have been behind Luis Scola, Markieff Morris and Channing Frye at power forward.

The Suns do not have to surrender any picks in the deal and get Johnson, who was the fourth pick in the draft out of Syracuse two years ago. The 6-foot-7 swingman will cost the Suns only about $300,000 more than Warrick for the coming season and has a team option for 2013-14, keeping the Suns' flexibility to add a major player in 2013 free agency.

Johnson averaged 6.0 points as a starter last season and made just 31 percent of his 3-pointers.

The Suns also re-signed shooting guard Shannon Brown today on a two-year, $7 million contract with half of the $3.5 million 2013-14 salary guaranteed.

After the trade, the Suns will have 12 roster players once Euroleague standout forward P.J. Tucker also signs his contract.

AZ Central

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