Last season Greivis Vasquez was one of the NBA's most improved players. Whatever improvements the former University of Maryland star makes next season will take place in a different locale.
The New Orleans Pelicans traded Vasquez to the Sacramento Kings as part of a three-way deal that brought swingman Tyreke Evans to the Crescent City and sent center Robin Lopez to the Portland Trailblazers, Yahoo Sports reported on Thursday.
The retooling Pelicans signed the 23-year-old Evans, a restricted free agent and the 2009-10 Rookie of the Year, to a four-year, $44 million offer sheet this week. New Orleans acquired former 76ers All-Star point guard Jrue Holiday during the NBA Draft and the talented but oft-injured Eric Gordon remains. With all those options, Vasquez became expendable even after 13.9 points and 9.0 assists during his second NBA season.
The 6-foot-6 guard, who will be playing for his third NBA team in four seasons, finished second in voting for the league's Most Improved Player award behind Indiana's Paul George. Vasquez was selected by the Memphis Grizzlies in the first round of the 2010 draft.
On the other side, the athletically gifted Evans,who averaged 15.2 points, 4.4 rebounds and 3.5 assists last season, has seen his scoring and passing averages drop over four straight seasons.
Seeking interior help due to the expected departure of J.J. Hickson, Portland shipped cash and future considerations for Lopez, a viable rebounder and shot blocker on a cheap contract.
Now Vasquez joins Sacramento's disjointed roster, one that includes first round pick Ben McLemore, Jimmer Fredette, Isaiah Thomas and Marcus Thornton in the backcourt, center DeMarcus Cousins and swingman John Salmons. The Kings, who went 28-54 last season, made this move after pulling a contract offer to free agent small forward Andre Iguodala on Wednesday.
Best of luck, Greivis.