Nuggets pick up options on G J.R. Smith, F Kleiza

DENVER (Ticker) - The Denver Nuggets on Sunday exercised their 2007-08 options on guard J.R. Smith and forward Linas Kleiza.

The Nuggets picked up the fourth year on Smith, who was acquired from the Chicago Bulls for guard Howard Eisley and two second-round picks in 2007. The option is worth slightly more than $1.6 million.

A first-round pick out of high school by New Orleans in 2004, Smith averaged 9.2 points and 2.0 rebounds in 131 games with the Hornets in his first two seasons. He was traded to the Bulls along with veteran forward P.J. Brown for center Tyson Chandler on July 14.

The third-year option for Kleiza, the 27th pick of the 2005 draft who was acquired from the Portland Trail Blazers in a draft-day trade for guard Jarrett Jack, is worth $1.011 million.

Appearing in 61 games last season, the 6-8 Lithuanian averaged 3.5 points and 1.9 rebounds.


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Updated Sunday, Oct 29, 2006