Lakers Acquire Mihm, Atkins and Banks in exchange for Patyon and Fox

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. Aug. 6 -- The Los Angeles Lakers have acquired center Chris Mihm in a sign-and-trade deal with the Boston Celtics, along with guards Chucky Atkins and Marcus Banks in exchange for Gary Payton and Rick Fox, it was announced today by General Manager Mitch Kupchak. In addition, the Celtics will receive the Lakers first round pick in next year’s NBA Draft while Los Angeles will receive Boston’s second round selection in 2005.

“This trade makes us deeper, younger and more athletic. Chris Mihm is a very good, versatile big player who immediately improves our front line. Chucky Atkins is a talented guard who should be able to help us right away and Marcus Banks is a young player who we feel has a bright future in the NBA,” said Kupchak. “We’re sorry to see Rick Fox leave. He was a fan favorite and he made major contributions to this franchise during his seven years with us, especially in the championship years of 2000, 2001 and 2002. We also appreciate the contributions that Gary Payton made. Although he was only with us one year, he was a significant factor in helping us reach the NBA Finals last season. We wish both Rick and Gary the best of luck in the future.”

Mihm, the seventh overall pick in the 2000 NBA Draft, averaged 6.3 points and a career-high 5.4 rebounds in 76 games with the Cleveland Cavaliers and Celtics last season. In his first season with the Cavs, the 7’0” center was selected to the 2000-01 Schick NBA All-Rookie Second Team. The following season, Mihm participated for the sophomore team in the “got milk?” Rookie Challenge during All-Star weekend and finished the year with career high averages in points (7.7) and blocks (1.20). Finishing his collegiate career as the University of Texas’ all-time leader in blocks (264) while ranking second in rebounds (945), second in double-doubles (47) and 13th in scoring (1,404), the 25-year old owns NBA career averages of 6.9 points, 5.0 rebounds and 0.93 blocks in 261 games.

Atkins, a five-year NBA veteran out the University of South Florida, averaged 12.0 points and 5.3 assists in 24 games last season with Boston after coming over from the Detroit Pistons midway through the season. In the 2004 Playoffs, the 5’11” guard increased his averages to 13.5 points, 3.8 assists and 33.3 minutes in four games. As a rookie with the Orlando Magic, Atkins was named to the 1999-2000 Schick NBA All-Rookie Second Team. For his career, the 29-year old Orlando native has posted averages of 10.0 points and 3.5 assists in 24.8 minutes.

Banks, the 13th overall selection in the 2003 NBA Draft, averaged 5.9 points, 2.2 assists, 1.09 steals and 17.1 minutes in 81 games last season including two starts. A 6’2” guard, Banks posted a career-high 28 points in an April 14 victory over the Atlanta Hawks while tallying 20-plus points on one other occasion (24, 4/4/04 @ Washington). Prior to joining the Celtics, the 22-year old Las Vegas native played two years at UNLV, averaging 20.3 points, 5.5 assists and 2.8 steals per game his senior season, earning First Team All-Mountain West Conference and Co-Defensive Player of the Year honors.

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