Suns Complete Trade With Cavs, Send Shaq to Cleveland

Posted: June 25, 2009

The Phoenix Suns today acquired the contracts of center Ben Wallace and swingman Sasha Pavlovic, a future conditional second-round selection and cash considerations from the Cleveland Cavaliers in exchange for Shaquille O’Neal, the club announced.

The 6-9, 240-pound Wallace joins his sixth NBA team following stints with the Washington Wizards (1996-99), Orlando Magic (1999-00), Detroit Pistons (2000-06), Chicago Bulls (2006-08) and Cleveland (2008-09) in his 13-year career. Wallace, 34, is a four-time NBA Defensive Player of the Year (2002, 2003, 2005, 2006) who owns career averages of 6.2 points, 10.3 rebounds and 2.16 blocks in 903 games (785 starts). A four-time All-Star (2003, 2004, 2005, 2006), Wallace was a member of the 2004 NBA Champion Detroit Pistons. The Virginia Union product has averaged double figure rebounds in seven of the last nine seasons, including a career and NBA-best 15.4 rebounds in 2002-03.

Pavlovic, 25, was originally selected by the Utah Jazz with the 19th overall selection in the first round of the 2003 NBA Draft. The six-year pro, who owns career averages of 5.8 points, 1.9 rebounds and 1.0 assist in 381 games, has spent the last five seasons with Cleveland. A starter on the Cavaliers’ 2007 NBA Finals squad, this season the 6-7, 235-pound Pavlovic saw action in 66 games and averaged 4.6 points on a career-best 41.0 percent shooting from three-point range.

Acquired by the Suns on Feb. 6, 2008, O’Neal averaged 16.5 points, 9.0

rebounds and 1.38 blocks in 103 games in a season-plus in the desert. An NBA All-Third Team Selection in 2009, O’Neal tallied 17.8 points and 8.4 rebounds in 75 games last season while earning his 15th career NBA All-Star selection. The 37-year-old O’Neal finished the season as the fifth-leading scorer in NBA history with 27,619 points in his 17-year career.