Hornets trade Snyder to Rockets, finalize Bulls' Chandler deal - NewsOn6.com - Tulsa, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sports - KOTV.com |

Hornets trade Snyder to Rockets, finalize Bulls' Chandler deal

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) _ After acquiring Peja Stojakovic to start at shooting guard, the New Orleans Hornets traded guard Kirk Snyder to the Houston Rockets on Friday for cash and a conditional second-round draft pick in 2008.

Snyder started 40 straight games in the Hornets' backcourt last season and averaged 8.0 points and 2.4 rebounds. Coach Byron Scott has said the 6-foot-10 Stojakovic, who agreed to a five-year, $64 million contract with the Hornets on Wednesday, will likely start at shooting guard.

``Kirk is a talented player, and I think the abilities and athleticism he possesses will make him a good fit for the Rockets,'' Scott said.

The Hornets also finalized a trade Friday sending veteran forward P.J. Brown and guard J.R. Smith to Chicago for center Tyson Chandler.

The two moves leave New Orleans temporarily without any reserves in the backcourt. Free agent Bobby Jackson has agreed to terms with the Hornets, although the deal hasn't been finalized, and Hornets general manager Jeff Bower said the Hornets had also agreed to terms with 6-foot-7 swingman Rasual Butler, their top 3-point shooter from last season.

``We have reached an agreement with Rasual that will get him signed sometime next week, and that was a factor in making this trade as well,'' Bower said.

In the past 10 days, the Hornets have also waived guards Arvydas Macijauskas and Moochie Norris.

Bower said the Hornets expect Jackson to be the backup at both guard positions while Butler will be able to come off the bench at shooting guard and small forward. He said New Orleans will also look into signing another backup at point guard.

``Between any of those combinations, actually we think we've got a nice tight rotation where roles can be clearly defined and players really have an understanding of what they need to do to live up to the expectations levels,'' Bower said. ``I think we've got a real nice rotation with all those players.''

The addition of Chandler gives New Orleans a stable of young players in the frontcourt. They had already added forward Cedric Simmons and center Hilton Armstrong in the first round of the draft, and Chandler gives them another player in that defense-first mold.

The 7-foot-1 center, the second overall pick in the 2001 draft, averaged 5.3 points and 9.0 rebounds last season.

``We think that's a big move for us, to bring in a player who's still very young, entering the prime of his career, that has the exact qualities that we were looking to add to our team,'' Bower said. ``He has length, ability to run the floor, shot-blocking presence and also a player that we think has untapped offensive potential. We think we'll be able to take advantage of that as well at the offensive end.''

In exchange, the Bulls get Brown, a 14-year NBA veteran who had been the last Hornets player left over from the franchise's days in Charlotte, and Smith, a first-round draft pick in 2004 who fell out of favor with Scott last season.

Snyder, selected 16th overall by Utah in the 2004 NBA draft, had been traded to New Orleans as part of a five-team deal last August. He began the season as a reserve, but eventually supplanted Smith in the starting lineup in January and began his run of consecutive starts.

``It's a great opportunity for this guy. He doesn't have a whole lot of competition. We'll probably sign some more people. But he has a tremendous upside and it's a great opportunity for him,'' Rockets general manager Carroll Dawson said.

``He was coming along really well this year. He shot 45 percent from the field, 36 percent from 3 _ that's very attractive to us with the type of team we have.'
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