Suns Acquire Hedo Turkoglu
Posted: July 14, 2010
The Phoenix Suns today acquired forward Hedo Turkoglu (TURK-oh-lue) from the Toronto Raptors in exchange for guard Leandro Barbosa and forward/center Dwayne Jones, the club has announced. The trade is pending the completion of physicals.
“Hedo is a versatile player and somebody who we always thought would fit into our system,” said Suns Head Coach Alvin Gentry. “He is a good ball handler who can create plays for other people and who can play three different positions. He’ll fit well into what we’re trying to do here.”
In the 6-10, 220-pound Turkoglu, the Suns acquire a multi-dimensional player who is both a premier long-range shooter and a top passer at his position. Turkoglu owns career averages of 12.2 points, 4.3 rebounds and 2.9 assists in 28.2 minutes in 752 games (443 starts) with the Sacramento Kings (2000-03), San Antonio Spurs (2003-04), Orlando Magic (2004-09) and Toronto Raptors (2009-10).
In 10 career seasons, Turkoglu has made seven playoff appearances and has won a postseason series in all but one of those appearances, including a trip to the 2009 NBA Finals as a member of the Magic. The 31-year-old Turkoglu averaged 15.8 points, 4.5 rebounds and 4.8 assists in helping to lead Orlando to the franchise’s second berth in the league’s championship series. Overall, Turkoglu’s teams are 9-7 (.563) in playoff series all-time.
The first Turkish-born player in NBA history, Turkoglu has averaged double-digit scoring in each of his last six seasons, including 15.8 points over his five-year tenure with the Magic. A willing and capable passer, Turkoglu is one of only three NBA forwards who have averaged at least four assists in each of the last three seasons, joining Miami’s LeBron James and Philadelphia’s Andre Iguodala. Turkoglu has made 100 or more three-pointers in each of the last five seasons, averaged 126 threes in that span (631-of-1644, .384) and is a career 38.3-percent shooter from long range.
Turkoglu’s best career season came in 2007-08 when he was named the NBA’s Most Improved Player after averaging 19.5 points, 5.7 rebounds and 5.0 assists.
One of the league’s top clutch shooters, Turkoglu has made six game-winning shots in the final seconds of a game since 2006-07 and game-clinching free throws on two other occasions in that span.
Born in Istanbul, Turkey, Turkoglu played four seasons for Efes Pilsen of the Turkish Professional League from 1996-2000 before being selected by Sacramento with the 16th overall pick in the first round of the 2000 NBA Draft. His NBA signing was a national sports event in his native Turkey that featured a nationally televised press conference. He and his wife, Banu, have one daughter, one-year-old Ela.