Kings Sign Maurice Taylor


Tuesday, October 3, 2006

KINGS SIGN FREE AGENT MAURICE TAYLOR

Maurice Taylor - courtesy NBAE/Getty Images

SACRAMENTO, CALIF. – The Sacramento Kings today signed free agent forward Maurice Taylor to a contract, it was announced by Kings’ President of Basketball Operations Geoff Petrie. Per club policy, terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

“We feel fortunate to add Maurice to our roster,” explained Petrie. “We look forward to having him provide us with some additional depth, flexibility and veteran experience on our frontline. We think he’ll fit in really well.”

Currently entering his 10th NBA season, Taylor spent the past one and a half seasons as a member of the New York Knicks where he averaged 6.3 points (.468 FGs, .699 FTs) and 3.4 rebounds through 67 games last season (2005-06).

“The addition of Maurice gives us an experienced veteran who can make open shots and play both the four and five,” said Kings’ head coach Eric Musselman. “We’ll probably look to him to contribute more at the center position.”

Selected after his junior season by the Los Angeles Clippers in the first round (14th overall) of the 1997 NBA Draft out of the University of Michigan, Taylor spent three seasons with the Clippers. He earned NBA All-Rookie Second Team honors in 1997-98. His best statistical campaign occurred during the 1999-00 season when he averaged 17.1 points (.464 FGs, .711 FTs), 6.4 rebounds and 1.6 assists in 62 games, of which he started 60 for the Clippers. Taylor led the Clippers in scoring for two straight seasons (16.8 ppg in 1998-99 and 17.1 ppg in 1999-00). He has amassed career averages of 11.2 points (.467 FGs, .712 FTs), 4.6 rebounds and 1.2 assists over 522 games and has averaged double-figure points five times, including each of his first four seasons.

The Kings are Taylor’s fourth team. He signed with the Houston Rockets as a free agent on August 25, 2000 and played five seasons in Houston before being traded to the Knicks on February 24, 2005 in exchange for Moochie Norris, Vin Baker and a 2006 second round pick.

Taylor averaged 12.9 points and 6.1 rebounds over his three-year career (97 games) at Michigan. He was named Big Ten Freshman of the Year in 1994-95 and started all but four of his 97 career contests. Taylor earned All-Big Ten Third Team honors as a junior, helping to lead the Wolverines to an NIT title.