Report: Trevor Ariza Traded to Thunder, Delon Wright to Pistons in 3-Team Deal

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistNovember 21, 2020

Portland Trail Blazers forward Trevor Ariza (8) in the second half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Feb. 4, 2020, in Denver. The Nuggets won 127-99. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
David Zalubowski/Associated Press

Veteran wing Trevor Ariza was traded Saturday for the third time this week, this time going from the Detroit Pistons to the Oklahoma City Thunder as part of a three-team deal.

According to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski, the Thunder are receiving Ariza, forward Justin Jackson and a draft pick, the Pistons are receiving guard Delon Wright, and the Mavericks are receiving forward James Johnson.

Ariza was previously traded from the Portland Trail Blazers to the Houston Rockets as part of the Robert Covington trade and then from Houston to Detroit in a sign-and-trade deal that allowed the Rockets to sign forward Christian Wood, per ESPN's Tim MacMahon.

The 35-year-old Ariza is a 16-year NBA veteran who has played for nine different teams. He is best known as a three-and-D guy.

Ariza started last season with the Sacramento Kings before getting traded to the Blazers in January for a package headlined by Kent Bazemore. Ariza went on to start all 21 games he appeared in for Portland, averaging 11.0 points, 4.8 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 1.6 steals and 1.6 three-pointers made.

His 2019-20 season ended when the COVID-19 pandemic halted the campaign, as he did not join the Blazers in the NBA bubble in Orlando, Florida, opting instead to spend time with his son.

During his career, Ariza has appeared in 1,064 regular-season games, making 731 starts. His career averages sit at 10.5 points, 4.8 rebounds, 2.2 assists, 1.5 steals and 1.4 three-pointers per game.

He could even be on the move again at some point this offseason since the Thunder have been stripping their roster by trading away veterans Chris Paul, Dennis Schroder and Steven Adams.

In Jackson, the Thunder are getting a younger forward who could conceivably be a big part of their rotation next season. The 25-year-old averaged 5.5 points and 2.4 rebounds per game in 65 contests for the Mavs last season.

The Pistons were perhaps the biggest winners of the deal since Wright gives them some much-needed backcourt depth, especially at the point guard position. He figures to slot in behind Derrick Rose and rookie first-round pick Killian Hayes at point guard, and he could potentially see playing time at shooting guard as well.

The 28-year-old, who was the No. 20 overall pick in the 2015 draft by the Toronto Raptors, averaged 6.9 points, 3.8 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 1.2 steals per game in 73 contests last season as a key reserve for Dallas.

Johnson rounds out the trade and adds to Dallas' frontcourt depth, which is much-needed with starting center Kristaps Porzingis set to miss the start of the 2020-21 season with a knee injury.

The 33-year-old Johnson has played for six different teams in 11 NBA seasons and split last season between the Miami Heat and Minnesota Timberwolves.

Johnson averaged 12.0 points, 4.7 rebounds, 3.8 assists, 1.4 blocks, 1.4 steals and 1.2 three-pointers made per game in his 14 contests with the Timberwolves, which suggests he could be a useful contributor in Dallas.