Phoenix Acquires James Jones from Indiana
The Phoenix Suns today completed a sign-and-trade deal with Indiana that will net the team restricted free-agent James Jones, an athletic swingman, who led the Pacers in three-point accuracy last season. In return, Phoenix will send Indiana its own 2008 second round pick. Jones signed a four-year contract with the fourth year being a player option. Per club policy, financial terms of the contract were not disclosed.
“James Jones gives us another long, athletic wing player who has become a very good range shooter,” said Suns President and General Manager Bryan Colangelo. “His versatility on both ends of the floor is a perfect fit for our system.”
In only his second NBA season in 2004-05, Jones, 24, ranked 25th in the NBA in three-point field goal percentage (.398). The former Pacers’ second round pick (49th overall) in the 2003 NBA Draft averaged 4.9 points and 2.3 rebounds in 17.7 minutes in 75 games (24 starts) last season after logging 26 total minutes as a rookie in 2003-04.
The 6-8, 220-pound guard/forward took advantage of increased playing time by scoring in double figures seven times during a 12-game span in late November and early December when the Pacers were shorthanded due to suspensions to Ron Artest, Jermaine O’Neal and Stephen Jackson. He also recorded his first two 20-plus point games during the stretch, including a career-high 27-point outburst at Seattle on Nov. 28. In that game, Jones connected on a career-high six three-point field goals on nine attempts.
A successful performer on and off the court at the University of Miami (Fla.), Jones earned Big East All-Academic honors in each of his four collegiate seasons, and became the school’s first Verizon Academic All-American in 2002-03. As a senior, Jones averaged a career-high 16.9 points and led the Hurricanes in blocks (1.8) and rebounds (6.0) in 28 games.