A three-way NBA deal Monday began with the Washington Bullets trading guard Jeff Malone and a draft pick to the Sacramento Kings in exchange for center Pervis Ellison.
The Kings then traded Malone and a draft pick to the Utah Jazz for Bobby Hansen, Eric Leckner and two draft picks.
The Kings received a second-round pick in 1991 from the Bullets and the two choices from the Jazz are in Wednesday’s draft--the 23rd, a first-rounder, and 49th. The Jazz will have Sacramento’s second-round choice this week, the 33rd overall.
In another deal, the New Jersey Nets acquired guard Reggie Theus from the Orlando Magic for two second-round choices, an indication that the Nets will pick Derrick Coleman with the top selection in the draft.
Regarding the three-way deal, new Bullet General Manager John Nash said: “Utah has a force. We have a building block. This might indicate a new direction and a new beginning. We’ve obtained quality youth in Pervis.”
Malone, 28, was the Bullets’ leading scorer last season, averaging 24.3 points per game. The 6-foot-4 guard played seven seasons with the Bullets after being drafted in the first round in 1983 out of Mississippi State.
“In Bullets’ recent history, I don’t think anybody has contributed as much to this franchise as Jeff Malone,” Coach Wes Unseld said. “He has proven he is an all-star player.
“I’m definitely happy to get a player the quality of Pervis Ellison. But I’m also sad in that I’m going to miss Jeff.”
The 6-11, 225-pound Ellison, the No. 1 pick in last year’s draft from Louisville, averaged 8.0 points and 5.8 rebounds in 34 games. He had bone spurs removed on his right foot and right ankle and was sidelined with tendinitis in the big toe of his right foot last season.
The Jazz made it no secret they were looking for a shooting guard to augment the play of All-Star playmaker John Stockton.
Theus, 32, gives New Jersey a durable guard who has a .472 career shooting percentage. Theus was the second leading scorer for the Magic last season, averaging 18.9 points per game.
The move seems to eliminate two of the three players the Nets were considering for the top draft choice--guard Gary Payton of Oregon State and shooting forward Dennis Scott of Georgia Tech.
That leaves the 6-10 Coleman of Syracuse, the NCAA’s all-time leading rebounder.