NETS ACQUIRE YI JIANLIAN AND BOBBY SIMMONS FROM MILWAUKEE IN EXCHANGE FOR RICHARD JEFFERSON
May 19th, 2008
East Rutherford, NJ – The New Jersey Nets have acquired forwards Yi Jianlian and Bobby Simmons from the Milwaukee Bucks in exchange for forward Richard Jefferson, Nets President Rod Thorn announced today.
“We feel that Yi can be a very special player,” said Thorn. “He is a 20-year old seven footer who shoots the ball extremely well, and he is an excellent addition to our frontcourt. Bobby Simmons is a veteran NBA player who has averaged 10 points for his career, and should be a rotation player for us.”
“I want to thank Richard for his contributions to the Nets over the past seven years. He was a member of Nets teams that went to two NBA Finals, won two Eastern Conference championships and four Atlantic Division titles, and leaves as the Nets second all-time leading scorer in franchise history. He always conducted himself in a professional manner, and we wish him only the best for the remainder of his career.”
Yi, a 7’0” native of Shenzhen, China, was selected sixth overall in the 2007 NBA Draft by the Milwaukee Bucks. In his rookie season, Yi played in 66 games, averaging 8.6 points and 5.2 rebounds. In 49 games as a starter, Yi posted averages of 9.7 points, 5.8 rebounds, 1.00 block. Among rookies, Yi ranked 9th in points per game (8.6), 5th in rebounds (344), 6th in blocks (56) and 3rd in free throw percentage (.841). He scored a career-high 29 points versus Charlotte on 12/22/07 and grabbed a career-high 13 rebounds on 11/14/07 versus Memphis.
Simmons, a six-year NBA veteran, appeared in 71 games for Milwaukee last season, making 21 starts and averaging 7.6 points and 3.2 rebounds. Simmons was selected with 42nd overall pick in the 2001 NBA Draft by the Seattle SuperSonics following his junior season at DePaul. After having his draft rights traded to the Wizards, Simmons spent two seasons in Washington before signing as a free agent with the Los Angeles Clippers prior to the 2003-04 season. Following two seasons with Los Angeles, Simmons signed as a free agent with Milwaukee prior to the 2005-06 season. In 342 career games Simmons holds averages of 10.0 points, 4.1 rebounds and 1.7 assists in 26.2 minutes per contest. Simmons enjoyed his best season in 2004-05, posting career-highs of 16.4 points and 5.9 rebounds in 75 games. He was forced to miss the entire 2006-07 season due to a stress reaction in his right heal.
Jefferson, originally selected by Houston with the 13th overall pick in the 2001 NBA Draft, was acquired by the Nets in the draft night trade in which the Nets also garnered the draft rights to Jason Collins and Brandon Armstrong, in exchange for the draft rights to Eddie Griffin. In his seven seasons with the Nets, Jefferson appeared in 489 games, averaging 17.4 points, 5.4 rebounds and 3.0 assists. He leaves the Nets ranked 2nd all-time in scoring (8,507), field goals made (2,936), free throws made (2,349) and free throws attempted (3,023), 4th in assists (1,486) and 7th in rebounds (2,627) and games played (489).
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