SALT LAKE CITY -- The New Jersey Nets have agreed to acquire All-Star point guard Deron Williams from the Utah Jazz in a three-team deal.
The Nets are sending rookie Derrick Favors and point guard Devin Harris to the Jazz as part of the package in a deal that also includes the Golden State Warriors.
Jazz officials confirmed the deal this morning.
“We feel that we’ve addressed a current need at point guard with Deron’s departure, as well as the future with draft picks and a big man,” said general manager Kevin O’Connor. “To do so we had to give up an All-Star, but we feel like this is a win for both sides.”
The move was first reported by The Record of Bergen County, N.J.
Jazz officials confirmed earlier that a trade was in the works. The Jazz are in Dallas for tonight's game with the Mavericks.
The deal comes two days after the Nets failed to land Carmelo Anthony, who was acquired by the New York Knicks as part of a blockbuster deal with the Denver Nuggets.
Harris, a former All-Star point guard, and Favors, the No. 3 pick in the draft, were part of the package the Nets were offering the Nuggets all season for Anthony. While they couldn't get Denver's All-Star forward, Wednesday's trade stole some of the spotlight from the rival Knicks on the night Anthony arrives at Madison Square Garden.
The Jazz were a perennial contender with Williams, but his reputation took a hit in Utah when Hall of Fame coach Jerry Sloan retired the day after a clash with him during a game.
Sloan, reached Wednesday morning at his second home in Illinois, was aware of the trade but didn’t want to say much.
“I have no reaction to what the Jazz are doing. We wish him well,” Sloan said of Williams. “We wish the Jazz well. Good luck to Deron.”
Sloan then said he had to “go rake some leaves right now.”
Williams was expected to be one of the headliners of the 2012 free agent class along with 2008 Olympic teammates Dwight Howard and Chris Paul, and the small-market Jazz could have faced losing him for nothing.
The Nets now hope Williams will sign a contract extension with them, which they can offer this summer. If so, he would become the face of their franchise when they move into their new arena in Brooklyn for the 2012-13 season.
New Jersey has been desperate to make its first score under new Russian owner Mikhail Prokhorov. The Nets talked with LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh last summer and when that failed they turned their attention to Anthony. They quickly bounced back from the disappointment of missing out on him with Williams, who is averaging 21.3 points and 9.7 assists.
One Jazz season ticket holder reached Wednesday morning was surprised to see Sloan leave mid-season but was more stunned that Williams is now gone.
“I’m in shock. I can’t even believe it,” said Mark Christiansen, a Jazz season ticket holder since 1981. “Sloan was getting sick and tired of coaching ... but this is a surprise. I guess I can understand it. I don’t think Deron was going to be here after next season. Deron decided he was going to be gone and the franchise decided he was going to be gone and they weren’t going to get any value for him. But I was shocked. Now the Jazz are in some serious trouble in making the playoffs and they have a new coach who I think is going to be another Jerry Sloan.”