The Minnesota Timberwolves today announced they have acquired guard Gary Neal and a 2019 second-round draft pick from the Charlotte Hornets in exchange for guards Mo Williams and Troy Daniels. The pick acquired by the Wolves in the trade was originally acquired by Charlotte from Miami in a draft day trade on June 26, 2014.
“This was a difficult decision because of what Mo brought to our team and the impact he had on our young guys,” said Wolves head coach Flip Saunders. “As a coach, you wanted to keep him because of his professionalism and understanding of what you wanted out of him as a player. He scored 52 points against Indiana and did everything we asked him to do. On the other side, we knew we were moving in a different direction with our youth so we felt it was in our best interest to make the deal. We thank Mo and Troy for their contributions and wish them the best of luck in Charlotte.
“In moving Mo, we felt it was important to get a proven scorer and three-point shooter like Gary,” said Wolves President of Basketball Operations/Head Coach Flip Saunders. “Gary was a solid rotation player with San Antonio for three years and an important contributor in the Spurs’ playoff runs. We also get a second round pick, which is another future asset for us.”
Neal, 30, is in his fifth season in the NBA and has career averages of 9.9 points, 2.1 rebounds and 1.7 assists in 21.5 minutes per game. He has appeared in 43 games for Charlotte this season, averaging 9.6 points, 2.2 rebounds and 1.9 assists in 21.7 minutes per game. In 2013-14, Neal played for Milwaukee (30 games) and Charlotte (22 games), averaging a career-high 10.5 points in 21.4 minutes per game. Neal spent his first three seasons in the NBA with San Antonio (2010-13), where he averaged 9.7 points, 2.2 rebounds and 1.7 assists in 207 games. He has appeared in a total of 45 playoffs games with San Antonio and Charlotte, averaging 7.5 points in 18.3 minutes per game.
Williams, 32, is averaging 12.2 points and 6.4 assists per game in 41 games (19 starts) this season with Minnesota after being signed as a free agent this past summer. He tallied eight double-doubles, his most in a season since tallying 12 during the 2010-11 season. An 11-year NBA veteran, Williams has averaged 13.3 points and 5.0 assists in 750 career games between Cleveland, Milwaukee, Minnesota, Portland, L.A. Clippers and Utah.
Daniels, 23, appeared in 19 games for the Wolves after being acquired from the Houston Rockets on Dec. 23, 2014, averaging 2.8 points in 8.1 minutes per game. For the season he is averaging 2.8 points in 7.3 minutes per game.