Trail Blazers Use 3-Team Trade to Get Walter Davis
Walter Davis went to Portland, Drazen Petrovic and Terry Mills moved to New Jersey, and Denver acquired a first-round draft pick and Greg Anderson Wednesday in a three-team NBA deal.
Davis, who has averaged nearly 20 points per game for his 14-year career, joins an already potent guard rotation for the Trail Blazers, the defending Western Conference champions, who have the NBA’s best record this season at 35-7. Davis was Denver’s No. 3 scorer, averaging 18.7 points in 27 minutes this season.
"(Walter Davis’) experience, his outside shooting, his intelligence, will be a real welcome asset for the Blazers, and particularly off the bench, he can give us additional depth,” said Bucky Buckwalter, the Trail Blazers’ vice president of basketball operations.
For Petrovic and Mills, the Nets gave up Anderson, acquired only last week from Milwaukee, and their No. 1 pick in 1992, 1993 or 1994.
“What we have done is satisfy a need for a rebounder and shot-blocker,” Nugget General Manager Bernie Bickerstaff said. “Terry Mills is a talented player and has a future in this league, but with Anthony Cook and Joe Wolf performing admirably, he has not been receiving the playing time he needs to allow him to develop.”
The Nuggets will get New Jersey’s first-round selection in 1992 if it’s not one of the first 12 picks. If Denver does not get the pick in 1992, the Nuggets will receive the Nets’ 1993 first-rounder, as long as it’s not among the first seven.
The Nuggets then will automatically get the Nets’ 1994 first-round selection if they didn’t get New Jersey’s pick in 1992 or 1993.
“This could be a good deal for all three teams,” Net General Manager Willis Reed said. “Portland gets a proven veteran who can help them get a ring. Denver gets a good rebounder and shot blocker, and they really wanted a first-round pick in this deal.”
Petrovic, a second-year guard from Zagreb, Yugoslavia, has averaged only 4.4 points in 18 games with the Trail Blazers this season.
He became disenchanted with the team after the Trail Blazers acquired guard Danny Ainge in the off-season, and at one point was fined for asking to be traded. The fine later was rescinded when he apologized.
Mills, a rookie forward, averaged 7.5 points in 17 games for Denver this season. He joined the team after a long contract holdout.
Bob Casciola, the Nets’ executive vice president, said Petrovic, who was given a one-year contract extension through 1993, is the key to the deal for the Nets.
“This is something we’ve been working on for weeks, even months,” Casciola said. “We’ve had a great deal of interest in Petrovic for some time.”
Said Reed: “Drazen Petrovic is a very promising player who wants to be the best European in the NBA.”
To make room for Mills and Petrovic on the roster, Casciola said the Nets placed center Sam Bowie on the injured list with a bruised right shin. Casciola said Petrovic and Mills will be in uniform Friday against the Lakers.
Anderson, now going to Denver, was acquired from the Bucks for Lester Conner on Jan. 16. He played one game for the Nets and had eight points and six rebounds in 18 minutes against Atlanta on Saturday.