Celtics Add Grumpy Guard
Washington — Jordan Crawford got so disgruntled that the Washington Wizards traded him away for a pair of expiring contracts.
The Wizards sent Crawford, who has led the team in scoring 17 times this season, to Boston Celtics for center Jason Collins and injured guard Leandro Barbosa at yesterday’s trade deadline.
A streaky scorer, Crawford carried much of the offensive load in November and December, but he has been unhappy with his role since John Wall returned from a knee injury last month. Crawford started taking rash jumpers outside of the offensive game plan, and his playing time dwindled to zero. He unhappily flung his jersey into the stands after failing to play for the fourth straight game as he walked off the court following Tuesday’s loss to the Toronto Raptors.
Crawford, a 2010 first-round draft pick, was acquired two years ago from the Atlanta Hawks at the trade deadline. His average of 13.2 points is still third on this season’s Wizards despite his recent dip in playing time. Only rookie Bradley Beal has scored more total points, but Washington was only 1-11 with Crawford as a starter.
In exchange, the Wizards get two players who will be free agents this summer — and one of them is already out for the season. Barbosa tore the ACL in his left knee in a loss to the Charlotte Bobcats earlier this month.
A free agent who was the NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year in 2006-07, Barbosa signed by the Celtics as a free agent last summer to back up Rajon Rondo while Avery Bradley recovered from shoulder surgery. Bradley has returned, but both Rondo and Barbosa are out with torn ACLs.
Barbosa averaged 5.2 points in 41 games in Boston.
Collins, an 11-year veteran, is known more for making contact than making baskets. Since the start of the 2006-07 season, he has 776 fouls and 554 points, including 74 fouls and 37 points this season.
On Deadline Day
New York — The only trade involving Dwight Howard came last summer. The potent scorers that moved did so long ago.
There was no eye-catching activity left for deadline day, resulting in minor deals yesterday to the disappointment of those hoping for a frenzy.
Josh Smith stayed put and the Celtics’ core stayed together, leaving J.J. Redick, dealt to Milwaukee, as the biggest name to be traded.
There were nine moves, nothing approaching a blockbuster and none to jump-start the Lakers.
Players such as James Harden and Rudy Gay were traded far before the deadline, but with teams perhaps fearful of new penalties for the biggest spenders, yesterday was mostly quiet.
The Atlanta Hawks held onto Smith, and Utah kept both Paul Millsap and Al Jefferson on a day when much attention was focused on both situations, since those players have value and could leave their teams this summer as free agents.
The long-shot deals never materialized. Howard remained in Los Angeles, just what Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak repeatedly said would happen. Howard’s unhappiness and struggles since he was acquired from Orlando last summer fueled speculation that the Lakers might move him before possibly losing him for nothing as a free agent.
Heat 86, Bulls 67
Chicago — LeBron James scored 26 points and grabbed 12 rebounds, and the Heat beat Chicago last night for their season-high ninth straight win.
James also had seven assists in another big performance after seeing his franchise-record run of scoring at least 30 end at seven games the previous night in Atlanta.
Dwyane Wade added 17 points, and the Heat took control in the first half, sending the Bulls to their fifth loss in seven games on a night when the Derrick Rose recovery story took another twist.
After saying last week that he wouldn’t rush back from his knee injury to play this season if he wasn’t ready, Rose had to go into damage control mode after his older brother, Reggie, blasted the organization in an ESPNChicago.com article for not making a move before yesterday’s trade deadline.