SALT LAKE CITY -- Utah general manager Frank Layden says Friday's trade of Jazz No. 1 draft pick Dominique Wilkins to Atlanta for NBA veterans John Drew and Freeman Williams will help the team's scoring.
'We're getting two players who can score,' Layden said, 'and it fills a depth weakness on our team without costing us anyone who is now on our roster.'
The three-player swap also includes 'a substantial undisclosed cash payment' to the Jazz, reportedly in the neighborhood of $1 million. Utah had not signed Wilkins since the June draft, but team officials had indicated the Georgia All America forward was not demanding a contract 'out of line with what a No. 1 draft choice would expect.'
The 6-foot-6 Drew is a seven-year NBA veteran. He has a career scoring average of 21.2 points per game and was named to the NBA All-Star team in 1976 and again in 1980.
The 6-4 Williams, a former NCAA scoring champion from Portland State, has averaged 15.5 points per game during four pro seasons with San Diego and Atlanta.
Both Drew and Williams have two years left on their contracts, according to Layden.
'John is an all-star performer I know well,' Layden said. 'He was at Atlanta during my final three seasons with the Hawks. And Freeman gives us a player who can really score coming off the bench.'
'These two players give us scoring depth. I'll tell you one thing, we're a better team today than we were yesterday.'
But, Layden also vowed the Jazz will 'continue to make changes and better our team. This is just the first one. We're not finished making deals by any means.'
He said Utah doesn't want 'to go through what we have gone through in the past three years in having our No. 1 draftchoices late for training camp.'
Jazz owner Sam Battistone said the amount of money involved in the trade would not be released. But Battistone said, 'Let me underline the word substantial. If I told you money was not a major part of the deal, I wouldn't be truthful. But it's not the whole story.'
Battistone said he had rejected strictly money offers from other clubs for the rights to sign Wilkins.
'We wanted quality players too. It was a combination of the two things,' he said.