Przybilla, Cunningham, Marks, 2 First Round Picks Acquired from Portland
February 24, 2011
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Charlotte Bobcats General Manager Rod Higgins announced today that the team has acquired center Joel Przybilla, forwards Dante Cunningham and Sean Marks, two first-round draft picks and cash considerations from the Portland Trail Blazers in exchange for Gerald Wallace.
"This was an incredibly difficult decision, but one that we thought was in the best interest of our franchise for the long term," Higgins said. "We are receiving two first-round draft picks that will help us build for our future, while also opening up opportunities for our young players and receiving pieces that will help us remain competitive in our push to make the playoffs this season. In addition, the contracts we acquired will provide us with additional financial flexibility moving forward."
A 7-1 center, Przybilla was selected by Houston with the ninth overall pick in the 2000 NBA Draft before having his rights traded to Milwaukee. In 548 NBA games with Milwaukee, Atlanta and Portland, he holds career averages of 4.1 points, 6.4 rebounds and 1.5 blocks, while connecting on .556 from the field. Przybilla has also appeared in 10 career postseason games with the Bucks and Trail Blazers. This season, he has appeared in 31 games (nine starts) with averages of 1.8 points and 3.9 rebounds in 14.4 minutes.
Cunningham, a 6-8 forward, was selected by Portland with the 33rd overall pick of the 2009 NBA Draft. He completed his rookie season with averages of 3.9 points and 2.5 rebounds in 11.2 minutes in 63 games. In 56 games this season (nine starts) he has posted averages of 5.1 points and 3.4 rebounds in 19.8 minutes.
The 6-10 Marks was chosen by New York with the 44th overall pick in the 1998 NBA Draft. The first native New Zealander to play in the NBA, Marks has appeared in 230 career games with Toronto, Miami, San Antonio, Phoenix, New Orleans and Portland with averages of 2.8 points and 2.2 rebounds in 9.9 minutes. During the 2004-05 season, he captured his first NBA Championship as a member of the Spurs.
Wallace was chosen by the Bobcats in the Charlotte Expansion Selection on June 22, 2004. He appeared in 454 games for Charlotte, with averages of 16.4 points, 7.5 rebounds, 2.4 assists, 1.8 steals and 1.2 blocks in 36.8 minutes. He became the first Bobcats player to be named to the Eastern Conference All-Star Team in 2010 and All-Defensive First Team following the 2009-10 season. He finishes his Bobcats career as the franchise’s all-time leader in games and minutes played, points, steals, defensive rebounds, field goals, field goals attempted, free throws and free throws attempted.
"We’d like to thank Gerald Wallace for all of his contributions to this organization both on and off the floor," Higgins said. "He has been the face of this franchise for seven seasons and helped lead us to our first-ever playoff berth. His heart, passion and love for the game will be missed and we wish him continued success."
In addition, the Bobcats have waived guard Sherron Collins and forward Dominic McGuire in order to create the requisite number of roster spots.