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HEAT Acquire Jermaine O’Neal & Jamario Moon

MIAMI, 2/13 – The Miami HEAT announced Friday they have acquired one of the NBA’s premier shot-blockers in six-time NBA All-Star forward/center Jermaine O’Neal, forward Jamario Moon and a conditional draft pick from the Toronto Raptors in exchange for forward Shawn Marion, guard Marcus Banks and cash considerations.

“I am very happy with this trade for many reasons,” said HEAT President Pat Riley. “First, we’re getting a proven six-time All-Star low post threat in Jermaine O’Neal, which I feel is essential as we compete for a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference this season. His rebounding and shot blocking presence will help balance out our roster with more size down low. Secondly, we’re also getting in Jamario Moon a versatile swingman in the mold of a younger Shawn Marion who can do many things on the court. Thirdly, we are guaranteed a future conditional first-round pick with the possibility of also adding a future second-round pick. Another key component of the deal is a $4.2 million trade exception which we also gained in this trade. And finally, looking at the big picture, this move gives us great cap flexibility in 2010. This is a good day for the Miami HEAT. I would also like to thank both Shawn and Marcus for their contributions while they were here with the HEAT and wish them the best in the future.”

O’Neal (6’11”, 260 pounds), a six-time NBA All-Star from 2002-07, is in his 13th season after being selected by the Portland Trail Blazers with the 17th pick in the 1996 NBA Draft. Three times in his career he has earned All-NBA honors (Second Team in 2003-04 and Third Team in 2001-02 and 2002-03) and he also captured the NBA Most Improved Player Award in 2002. During his stellar career he has ranked among the Top 10 in the NBA in blocks seven times and in the Top 10 in rebounds on three occasions. The Columbia, S.C. native has appeared in 766 games and has averaged 14.3 points, 7.7 rebounds, 1.93 blocks, 1.5 assists and 28.3 minutes while shooting 46.0 percent from the floor and 70.9 percent from the foul line. He has also appeared in 70 postseason games and has averaged 13.3 points, 7.3 rebounds, 1.84 blocks, 1.1 assists and 28.8 minutes.

This season O’Neal has appeared in 41 games (34 starts) for the Raptors and is averaging 13.5 points, 7.0 rebounds, 2.00 blocks, 1.6 assists and 29.7 minutes while shooting 47.3 percent from the floor and 81.0 percent from the foul line. He currently ranks fifth in the NBA in blocks per game. O’Neal has scored in double figures on 26 occasions this season with nine games with at least 20 points and one 30-point performance (36 at Sacramento on Dec. 26). He has posted seven double-doubles including five straight from Nov. 10-19. In his last six games he has averaged 16.8 points, 8.2 rebounds, 3.33 blocks, 2.2 assists and 38.3 minutes while shooting 47.1 percent from the floor and 84 percent from the foul line. He has tallied 20-or-more points four times in the last six games and recorded a season-high nine blocks against the Lakers on Feb. 4.

Moon (6’8”, 200 pounds), who was named to the T-Mobile All-Rookie Second Team in 2007-08, is in his second season in the NBA after signing with the Raptors as a free agent on July 10, 2007. He has appeared in 132 NBA games (114 starts) and has averaged 8.0 points, 5.6 rebounds, 1.2 assists, 1.15 blocks, 1.10 steals and 26.9 minutes while shooting 48.1 percent from the floor, 33.5 percent from three-point range and 78.7 percent from the line. This season he has appeared in 54 games (39 starts) for the Raptors and has averaged 7.3 points, 4.6 rebounds, 1.3 assists, 1.20 steals, 0.81 blocks and 25.5 minutes. He currently leads the NBA in steals per turnover ratio (2.10) and ranks 33rd in steals per game. Prior to signing with the Raptors he appeared in 44 games with the Albany Patroons of the Continental Basketball Association during the 2006-07 season and was named the CBA Defensive Player of the Year and a First Team All-CBA selection.

Marion (6’7”, 228 pounds) was acquired from the Phoenix Suns along with Banks on Feb. 6, 2008 in exchange for Shaquille O’Neal. Marion appeared in 58 games as a member the HEAT in parts of both the 2007-08 and 2008-09 seasons and averaged 12.7 points, 9.4 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 1.50 steals, 1.03 blocks and 36.5 minutes while shooting 47.5 percent from the floor and 22.5 percent from three-point range and 75.6 percent from the foul line. Banks (6’2”, 200 pounds) appeared in 28 games in parts of two seasons with the HEAT and averaged 5.6 points, 2.1 assists, 1.4 rebounds, 0.57 steals and 15.2 minutes while shooting 47.1 percent from the floor, 33.3 percent from three-point range and 73.5 percent from the foul line.