SUNS ACQUIRE BLEDSOE, BUTLER
Phoenix deals Dudley in three-team trade
PHOENIX – The Phoenix Suns today announced that the club has acquired guard Eric Bledsoe and forward Caron Butler from the Los Angeles Clippers in a three-team trade. As part of the deal, the Suns send guard Jared Dudley to the Clippers and a future second-round pick to the Milwaukee Bucks; the Bucks receive another second-round pick from the Clippers and agree to sign-and-trade guard JJ Redick to Los Angeles. The second-round pick conveyed by the Suns is the 2014 pick received by Phoenix from Toronto in the Sebastian Telfair trade in February 2013.
“The addition of a very dynamic young player in Eric Bledsoe and an All-Star veteran in Caron Butler is very exciting for the Suns,” said Suns President of Basketball Operations Lon Babby. “At the same time, we thank Jared Dudley, a consummate professional in every respect. He takes our best wishes with him to the Clippers.”
“We are thrilled to add Eric and Caron to the Phoenix Suns,” said Suns General Manager Ryan McDonough. “They were both key parts of the Clippers team that set a franchise record for wins last season and we are excited to add their athleticism, shooting, and leadership to our organization.”
Widely considered one of the best young guards in the NBA, and one of the league’s most highly sought-after players this offseason, Bledsoe is an athletic, two-way player entering his fourth NBA season. Listed at 6-foot-1, the 23-year-old Bledsoe has a 78-inch wingspan and a 40-inch vertical leap.
Despite playing behind All-NBA First Team guard Chris Paul in 2012-13, Bledsoe averaged career highs scoring (8.5), rebounds (3.0) and steals (1.43) and added 3.1 assists in 76 appearances, 64 of which came in a reserve role. In fact, the box-score-stuffing Bledsoe started 12 games a season ago and in those opportunities averaged 14.2 points, 4.8 rebounds, 5.3 assists and 2.50 steals. A high-level ball-handler who can create his own shot, as a starter Bledsoe averaged 4.1 free-throw attempts per game, which would have matched Suns guard Goran Dragic’s team-leading average from 2012-13. Bledsoe is coming off a season in which he shot a career-best from both the field (.445) and three-point range (.397) last season.
SUNS TRADE RELEASE, PAGE TWO
Dynamic both offensively and defensively, Bledsoe scored a career-high 27 points on Feb. 6 at Orlando last season. In that game, he also tallied six steals, one of three contests in 2012-13 in which he had at least six; only starters Monta Ellis (7) and Ricky Rubio (4) had more such performances a season ago. In addition, Bledsoe recorded a career-high seven steals on March 5, 2011 against Denver; to put that in perspective, only three Suns in franchise history have made more than seven steals in a single game (Shawn Marion, 2006; Kevin Johnson, 1993; Alvan Adams, 1985).
Bledsoe owns career NBA averages of 6.7 points, 2.6 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 1.18 steals in 197 games (38 starts), all with Los Angeles. The 2010 NBA All-Rookie Second Team selection played just one season at the University of Kentucky, averaging 11.3 points, 3.1 rebounds and 2.9 assists as a collegian, before being selected by the Oklahoma City Thunder with the 18th overall pick (first round) of the 2010 NBA Draft and acquired in a draft-night deal by the Clippers.
Butler is a two-time NBA All-Star (2007, 2008) and former 20-point scorer who has averaged double-digit scoring in 10 of his 11 NBA seasons. A 6-7, 217-pound small forward, Butler owns career averages of 15.5 points, 5.4 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 1.46 steals in 730 games (697 starts) with Miami (2002-04), the LA Lakers (2004-05), Washington (2005-09), Dallas (2010-11) and the LA Clippers (2011-13).
A former 2003 All-Rookie First Team selection, Butler has made six playoff appearances in 11 career seasons. The UConn product averaged better than 20.0 points in both 2007-08 and 2008-09, including a career-high 20.8 points in the 2008-09 season. Butler is entering the final season of a three-year deal signed with the Clippers on Dec. 9, 2011.
Dudley departs the Valley as a fan favorite and 2009-10 Dan Majerle Hustle Award winner whose best seasons as a professional came in a Suns uniform. Dudley, who joined the Suns in a midseason trade on Dec. 10, 2008, developed from an energy player into a top shooter, reliable scorer and eventually a starter while in Phoenix. The six-year veteran owns career averages of 8.5 points, 3.8 rebounds and 1.3 assists in 370 career games, but over the last four seasons has averaged 10.5 points, 3.7 rebounds and 1.8 assists.
The Boston College product and 2006-07 ACC Player of the Year averaged 10.9 points, 3.1 rebounds and 2.6 assists a season ago for Phoenix, leading the club in both three-pointers made (106) and three-point field goal percentage (.391, 36th-NBA).
Source: Phoenix Suns