NEW ORLEANS—New Hornets swingman Trevor Ariza said he was concerned about coming to his 5th NBA team. That is until he got off the plane in New Orleans to quite a welcome. Said Ariza, "When I did get traded I was a little worried about man, another place, what's going to happen. Once, I got here it all went out the window."
The Hornets introduced Ariza Saturday afternoon at Harrah's hotel downtown. Ariza was acquired from the Houston Rockets Wednesday in a four team trade that included New Jersey and Indiana. In the deal, the Hornets dealt point guard Darren Collison and forward James Posey to Indiana.
Ariza was drafted by the Knicks in the second round of the 2004 NBA draft. Last year in Houston, he started 71 games, the most of his career. Ariza started all 23 games for the Lakers as they won the 2008-2009 NBA title.
Last season, Ariza averaged 14.9 points, 5.6 rebounds, and 3.8 assists for the Rockets.
Head coach Monty Williams said Ariza can be part of a Hornets climb in the Western Conference standings. But, Williams added, " everything sounds good in the summer. That's what I told Trevor last night. We can sit here and talk about it all night long. we have a lot of work to do. And, I am not one for making promises I can't keep."
Williams said the Hornets will continue to look for ways to improve the roster. Said Williams of he and general manager Dell Demps, "we will take no vacation, have no time off. We can take a vacation next summer."