Suns acquire Jones from Pacers

The General

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The Phoenix Suns took a step toward replacing Joe Johnson on Thursday, acquiring swingman James Jones from the Indiana Pacers in a sign-and-trade deal.

Financial terms were not disclosed. Jones, 24, was signed to a four-year contract by the Pacers and traded to the Suns for a 2008 second-round pick.

The Suns had worked a sign-and-trade with Johnson, who was seeking a huge contract. Phoenix signed the versatile swingman to a five-year, $70 million contract and dealt him to Atlanta for swingman Boris Diaw, two first-round picks and a $6 million trade exception.

In the offseason, the Suns have traded swingmen Johnson and Quentin Richardson and acquired Raja Bell, Diaw and Jones, who emerged last season for the shorthanded Pacers.

"James Jones gives us another long, athletic wing player who has become a very good range shooter," Suns president Bryan Colangelo said. "His versatility on both ends of the floor is a perfect fit for our system."

Last season, the 6-8 Jones was pressed into duty when the Pacers lost their top three scorers to suspensions. After playing just 26 minutes as a rookie, he played 75 games - starting 24 - and filled holes at shooting guard and small forward.

Jones averaged 4.9 points and 2.3 rebounds in 17.7 minutes, shooting nearly 40 percent (66-of-166) from 3-point range. He scored a career-high 27 points against Seattle on November 28.

The Pacers expect forward Jonathan Bender to be healthy this season and also signed free agent guard Sarunas Marciulionis, making Jones expendable.

http://www.tsn.ca/nba/news_story.asp?ID=134556
 
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