Marciulionis, Houston Are Traded for Pierce, Rogers

From Associated Press

The Golden State Warriors acquired guard Ricky Pierce, the rights to Carlos Rogers and two second-round picks in the 1995 draft from the Seattle SuperSonics for guard Sarunas Marciulionis and forward Byron Houston in a trade announced Monday.

The 6-foot-4 Pierce, a two-time Sixth Man Award winner with the Milwaukee Bucks, has averaged 16.4 points per game in 12 NBA seasons. The 34-year-old shooting guard averaged 14.5 points in 51 games last season with Seattle.

Pierce currently ranks seventh as the most accurate free-throw shooter in the league’s history, with an .876 average.

Rogers, 23, was the 11th pick in the June draft. The 6-foot-11 forward-center from Tennessee State averaged 24.5 points, 11.5 rebounds and three blocked shots in 31 games last season. He was also chosen Ohio Valley Conference player of the year for the second consecutive season.

“By acquiring Ricky Pierce and Carlos Rogers, we have added one of the NBA’s best pure shooters and a young big man with tremendous potential,” Warrior Coach Don Nelson said in a statement.

Nelson previously coached Pierce in Milwaukee from 1984-85 through the 1986-87 season.

“Although, from a basketball standpoint, we believe this trade significantly improves the makeup and depth of our team, this was a tough choice to make, personally, because it forces us to part company with two people I really admire both on and off the court,” Nelson said. “Sarunas and Byron were among the fiercest and most inspirational players on our team.”

Marciulionis has sat out 124 games the last two seasons because of a string of injuries. The 6-foot-5 Lithuanian sat out last season because of a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee. He averaged 14.7 points, 2.8 rebounds and 2.4 assists in five seasons with the Warriors.