EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J., July 15 -- The New Jersey Nets have agreed to a sign-and-trade deal with the Denver Nuggets in which the Nets would send forward Kenyon Martin to Denver in exchange for three future first-round picks, Nets CEO Rod Thorn announced today.
The future first-round picks, which are all held by Denver, include Denver's own selection, a first-round pick conveyed to them by the Los Angeles Clippers and a first-round pick acquired from Philadelphia.
"Kenyon is a great player who played a pivotal role in our success over the past three seasons," said Thorn. "He is a terrific guy and we wish him nothing but continued success in the near future.
"This was an extremely difficult decision for our franchise, but I felt that the magnitude of the contract, both in its first year due to the signing bonus as well as over its duration, would seriously impair our ability to sign enough quality players," Thorn added. "This core group of players has had an amazing run over the past few years, and we will work diligently toward once again competing for an NBA title."
The No. 1 overall selection by the Nets in the 2000 NBA Draft, Martin has career averages of 15.1 ppg, 7.6 rpg and 1.36 bpg over four seasons with New Jersey. Martin leaves the Nets ranked ninth in team history in rebounds (2,147) and eighth in blocks (386). This past season, Martin was named to the 2004 NBA All-Star Team, as he averaged 16.7 ppg and a team high 9.7 rpg in 65 games.
Appearing in 51 career playoff games with New Jersey, Martin averaged 18.1 ppg and 8.3 rpg, and ranks among the top five in 14 Nets' postseason statistical categories, including first in rebounds (424), blocks (70) and field goals made (359), and second in points (924) and assists (126).
The breakdown of the future picks acquired by the Nets includes: Clippers 2005, protected 1-14 or 2006, unprotected: Philadelphia 2005, protected 1-8 or 2006, protected 1-5 or 2007, unprotected: Denver 2006, protected 1-5, 2007, protected 1-2, 2008, unprotected.