Nets call off deal for F Abdur-Rahim; acquire Sixers F Jackson

EAST RUTHERFORD, New Jersey (Ticker) - Shareef Abdur-Rahim will not be playing home games in the Meadowlands next season. The New Jersey Nets took immediate measures to fill his spot.

The Nets on Tuesday called off their trade for the Portland Trail Blazers forward, five days after team president Rod Thorn announced the deal was on hold after “a question arose” concerning Abdur-Rahim’s physical examination.

Hours later, the Nets announced they had acquired forward Marc Jackson from Philadelphia for a second-round pick in 2006.

New Jersey had until August 12 to complete a sign-and-trade with Portland for Abdur-Rahim.

The Nets and Trail Blazers had agreed on a deal, pending a physical, that would have sent the nine-year veteran to the Eastern Conference squad in exchange for New Jersey’s lottery-protected first-round pick in 2006 and the team’s trade exception as a result of the Kerry Kittles deal to the Los Angeles Clippers in 2004.

“We were anticipating adding Shareef to our roster,” Thorn said Tuesday. “However, during the course of his normal physical examination, some questions arose that gave us cause for concern. After consulting with several noted specialists, we feel that rescinding the trade is our best course of action. We will now look in other directions for ways to improve our team for the upcoming season.”

Abdur-Rahim was to receive a six-year contract worth $38 million in the sign-and-trade.

“We were notified by New Jersey this afternoon that they were rescinding the sign and trade for Shareef Abdur-Rahim,” Portland general manager John Nash said. “They cited some concerns after a physical examination and believe that rescinding the trade is in their best interest. The contract that was agreed to with Shareef becomes null and void and he is now a free agent.”

Abdur-Rahim, 29, averaged 16.8 points and 7.3 rebounds while shooting better than 50 percent last season for Portland, where he accepted a reduced role with the Trail Blazers.

He was to have manned New Jersey’s frontcourt with improving center Nenad Krstic. The Nets have one of the best perimeter trios in the NBA in Jason Kidd, Vince Carter and Richard Jefferson but struggled up front last season.

New Jersey was 24th in rebounding margin and 26th in blocks margin in 2004-05.

Instead, Jackson, who averaged 12.0 points and 5.0 rebounds last year with Philadelphia, will join New Jersey, his fourth team in six seasons in the NBA. The well-travelled Jackson was drafted by Golden State in the second round in 1997 before playing three seasons internationally in Spain and Turkey. He returned to the Warriors for the 2000-01 season when he averaged career highs of 13.2 points and 7.5 rebounds in 48 games.

A native of Philadelphia who attended Temple University, Jackson finished third in the balloting for the 2001 NBA Rookie of the Year but was sent to Minnesota midway through the following season.

In five injury-riddled campaigns, he has averaged 9.0 points and 4.7 rebounds in 267 games.

The third overall pick in the 1996 draft, Abdur-Rahim has averaged 19.8 points and 8.1 rebounds in 672 games for Vancouver, Atlanta and Portland. He was an All-Star in 2002 with Atlanta but never has played in the postseason.


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Updated Tuesday, Aug 9, 2005