Wolves trade Ryan Gomes and 16th pick to Blazers for Martell Webster
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MINNEAPOLIS -- After selecting Wes Johnson with the fourth overall pick in Thursday night's NBA draft, the Wolves selected 6'9" 225-pound forward Luke Babbitt from Nevada with the 16th pick, then turned around and traded him and Ryan Gomes to the Portland Trail Blazers for forward Martell Webster.
"We're excited to add a player like Martell who has the ability to shoot the basketball and display a rare athleticism on the floor. He fits in well with our stated desire to stay young and add maturity," president of basketball operations David Kahn said in a press release.
"We want to thank Ryan Gomes for being the consummate professional both on and off the court during his time in Minnesota and wish him the best of luck in the future."
After missing nearly the entire 2008-2009 season with a left foot injury, Webster, 23, averaged 9.4 points, 3.3 rebounds, and shot 37 percent from three-point range last season.
Gomes, 27, came to the Wolves via the Kevin Garnett Trade in 2007. He averaged 10.9 points, 4.6 rebounds, and shot 37.2 percent from three-point range last season.
Gomes has $13.7 million and three years remaining on his contract, including a $4.9 million player option for 2012-2013. Webster is owed $4.8 million this upcoming season and $5.2 million in 2011-2012.
Babbitt, 21, worked out for the Wolves on Tuesday, and he averaged 21.9 points and 8.9 rebounds as a sophomore at Nevada last season, while shooting 41.6 percent from three-point range.
Multiple reports indicated the Wolves had several trade offers on the table involving the 16th pick.
Many folks may look at Webster's numbers since being drafted sixth overall in 2005 and wonder why the Wolves seemingly gave up so much. But Webster fits better in an up-tempo offense, and the Blazers ranked dead-last in pace factor last year. The Wolves ranked second.
Webster immediately becomes one of the best shooters on the roster, but the Wolves are now without Gomes' valuable contract.