June 10, 2013
Charlotte Bobcats President of Basketball Operations Rod Higgins announced today that the team has signed free agent center Al Jefferson. Per team policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed.
“We are ecstatic to add Al to our roster,” Higgins said. “He gives us a low post presence that we have not had on our roster and brings a skill set that does not become available very often. He is a veteran leader who helps his teammates get better, but at the same time he is only 28 years old so he can be part of the core of this franchise for several years to come.”
The 15th pick in the 2004 NBA Draft, the 6-10 Jefferson has played in 628 games for the Boston Celtics, Minnesota Timberwolves and Utah Jazz during his nine-year career. He has career averages of 16.4 points, 9.0 rebounds, 1.5 assists and 1.4 blocks in 30.6 minutes, while shooting .500 from the field.
Jefferson is one of only two players in the NBA to have averaged at least 17.0 points and at least 9.0 rebounds in each of the last six seasons, joining Dwight Howard in doing so. No other player has posted those averages in more than four of the last six campaigns.
Over his last three seasons, all with Utah, Jefferson missed just nine regular season games, playing in 221 of a possible 230 contests. During that span, he averaged 18.5 points, 9.5 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 1.6 blocks in 34.4 minutes, while shooting .494 from the field and .767 from the free-throw line. He has finished the season in the NBA’s top 10 in defensive rebounds in each of the three seasons and has been among the league’s top eight in field goals in each of the last two years.
Last season with the Jazz, Jefferson averaged 17.8 points, 9.2 rebounds, 2.1 assists, 1.1 blocks and 1.0 steal in 33.1 minutes played. He led all NBA centers in field goals, ranked second among NBA centers in scoring average and ranked fourth among NBA centers in defensive rebounds, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.