Bobcats Acquire Jumaine Jones
"Jumaine Jones is a versatile player who provides a different dimension to our frontcourt positions and will help us in many ways on both ends of the floor," Bobcats General Manager & Head Coach Bernie Bickerstaff said. "He is a proven outside shooter and has shown success rebounding the ball. We look forward to having him on our roster."
Jones averaged 7.6 points, 5.2 rebounds and shot .391 from three-point range in 24.1 minutes last season for the Lakers. He ranked 18th in the NBA in three-point percentage, connecting on 102-261 attempts, and reached double-figure scoring 21 times, including a season-high 25 points on 7-8 from the three-point line against Orlando on Dec. 12.
The 6-8, 218-pound forward has appeared in 377 career games with Philadelphia, Cleveland, Boston and L.A. Lakers with career averages of 6.6 points, 4.2 rebounds and 0.9 assists in 20.0 minutes. His top scoring season came in 2002-03 when he averaged 9.8 points with Cleveland and he grabbed a career-best 6.0 rebounds in the 2001-02 season with the Cavaliers.
Jones was drafted by Atlanta with the 27th overall pick in the 1999 NBA Draft, but had his draft rights traded to Philadelphia. An early entry candidate, Jones spent two seasons at the University of Georgia, where he averaged 16.6 points on .449 (385-858) shooting from the field and 9.0 rebounds in 31.7 minutes. He also recorded 1,079 points and became the first sophomore to reach 1,000 points since fellow alum and NBA great Dominique Wilkins did so during his collegiate career.
The newly acquired Jumaine Jones had this to say to the media following Wednesday's trade that brought him to the Bobcats:
(Opening statement) I'm very excited to get back to the Eastern Conference where I feel like I had most of my success in Philadelphia and my time in Boston. Being close to home back on the East coast, where my family is. I'm definitely excited about the opportunity that I feel I will have in Charlotte. I feel like I can come in and compliment a lot of players that are there. Now, on this team I guess I'm going to be looked upon as one of the veterans, so I feel like I can come in and help the younger guys out and lead them in the right direction. I feel like I can come in and compliment (Emeka) Okafor, (Matt) Carroll and a lot of other guys that we have.
(On your goals of fitting in with the team) I just want to be the backbone for our defense. I really want to get out and get active on the defensive end with us being young. With there being so many good offensive teams, we will definitely have to be able to get some (defensive) stops. I just want to come in and give the energy that we need, especially defensively, because that is where I feel we can come in and compete with a lot of teams - on the defensive end. And I feel offensively, we are going to be able to score if we are able to get stops.
(On not getting a lot of playing time with the Lakers) Well, my thing was I really wasn't sure what was going on, especially with me playing a bulk of the minutes last year. I kind of felt that something was going to happen with me not playing and not getting any reason why I wasn't playing. I definitely felt like I came in and competed and did all of things that I could control and still not play in any minutes in any preseason games. So, I kind of felt like something was coming up but I'm excited about coming to Charlotte and getting an opportunity.
(On if he got the idea that he might be involved in a trade) No. I didn't ask, and they didn't give me a reason for not playing. I just came in and did the things that I could do. I worked hard at all the things that I could control.
(On if his best skill offensively is shooting with range) I feel like I am definitely a good three-point shooter. I feel like I can do other things on the offensive end, like crash the boards and be viewed as a slasher. I just haven't had the opportunity to do a lot of things that I can do. I just feel like being in Charlotte presents that opportunity for me.
(On taking on the role of a veteran) Here in Los Angeles, there were a lot of young guys on the team, and I was pretty much bringing along some of the younger guys. That's something I definitely want to do there. I'm really excited and looking forward to working with the younger guys. I've been around and had playoff experience and been to the finals, so I feel like I can bring some things to the table and really let guys know what it takes to win.