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Celtics waive Paxson, Smith

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BOSTON -- Guards Jim Paxson and Charles Smith were waived Wednesday by the Boston Celtics.

Paxson, 33, has been on the team's suspended list for two months, since the Celtics decided the 6-foot-6 former All-Star would not be on their roster this year.

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The 6-foot-1, 190-pound Smith was in his second NBA season, after signing with Boston as a free agent out of Georgetown University. He played in 60 games last season but has been on the injured list due to a shoulder problem since the start of the current season.

Paxson suffered a series of back and wrist injuries during his 2 seasons with the Celtics. His value to Boston declined with the return of 24-year-old guard Brian Shaw from Italy and the acquisition of first- round draft pick Dee Brown, a 22-year-old guard.

First-year coach Chris Ford intended to change the Celtics' style of play, emphasizing the speed and defense which the younger guards could provide, unlike the slower Paxson.

The Celtics announced on Oct. 6 that Paxson would not return for the 1990-91 season, but did not release him at the time. The team said it wanted to give him the chance to explore other professional opportunities. Paxson, an All-Star in 1983 and 1984, hoped to be picked up by another team, but it became apparent his playing days were over, despite playing in 72 games last season.

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'Playing for the Boston Celtics was and is the ultimate dream of any basketball player,' Paxson said. 'I not only played alongside players with unique talent, but made a lot of friends along the way. I am now looking forward to new career challenges.'

He did not say what career options he is considering.

The Celtics acquired Paxson from the Portland Trailblazers on Feb. 23, 1988, in a trade for Jerry Sichting.

Portland's first-round draft choice in 1979, Paxson is a former captain of the Trailblazers. He was a member of the All-NBA team in 1984.

Paxson played in 784 career games and averaged 14.3 points. He played in 53 playoff games, including 20 with the Celtics.

Now a resident of the San Diego area, Paxson is one of three family members who not only played in the NBA, but were chosen in the first round of the draft. His brother John is currently a member of the Chicago Bulls, and his father, Jim, played with the Minneapolis Lakers and the Cincinnati Royals.

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