Orlando Magic Blog

Group Blog talking about the NBA 2009 Eastern Conference Champions. Due to the amazing success of the 2009 playoff run comments are now frequently deleted to kill offensive comments, incoherence, or asininity. Comments can no longer be anonymous and require either a Blogger or OpenID account.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Magic Acquire Brian Cook and Maurice Evans From L.A. Lakers

Orlando, FL – The Orlando Magic have acquired forward Brian Cook and guard Maurice Evans from the Los Angeles Lakers in exchange for forward Trevor Ariza, General Manager Otis Smith announced today. In addition, the Magic have waived forward Bo Outlaw. “Brian (Cook) helps bolster our frontcourt,” said Smith. “He is a power forward who shoots the ball extremely well, while also bringing added toughness to our roster. Maurice (Evans) is a tremendous athlete, a solid defender and capable of playing multiple positions. Both Brian and Maurice fit in very well with what we are trying to accomplish.” Smith also added: “Trevor (Ariza) is a great talent and we certainly wish him well. We also thank Bo (Outlaw) for everything he has done for our organization as a player.” Cook (6’9”, 250, 12/4/80, Illinois, 4 years) has played in six games (two starts) this season with the L.A. Lakers, averaging 2.3 ppg. and 1.7 rpg. in 11.7 minpg. Evans (6’5”, 220, 11/8/78, Texas, 4 years) has appeared in seven games this season with the Lakers, averaging 4.4 ppg., 1.7 apg. and 1.3 rpg. in 13.7 minpg. Cook has played in 259 career NBA regular season games, all with the Lakers, averaging 6.6 ppg. and 3.2 rpg. in 16.0 minpg. He has shot .392 (162-413) from three-point range. Cook has also appeared in 25 postseason contests, averaging 3.0 ppg. and 1.6 rpg. in 7.0 minpg. Originally selected in the first round (24th overall) of the 2003 NBA Draft by the Lakers, Cook netted a career-high 28 points on Feb. 7, 2006 @ Dallas and pulled down a career-best 14 rebounds on Mar. 4, 2007 @ Phoenix. Evans has appeared in 238 career NBA regular season games with Minnesota, Sacramento, Detroit and the Lakers, averaging 6.3 ppg. and 2.5 rpg. in 17.8 minpg. He has also played in 24 playoff outings, averaging 4.0 ppg. and 1.2 rpg. in 10.0 minpg. Evans originally signed as a free agent with Minnesota on July 23, 2001, after he was not selected during the 2001 NBA Draft. He poured in a career-high 26 points on Feb. 25, 2007 @ Golden State and recorded a career-best 14 rebounds on Mar. 8, 2005 vs. Memphis. Ariza has played in 11 games this season with the Magic, averaging 3.3 ppg. and 2.2 rpg. in 10.5 minpg. Outlaw has played in two games with Orlando this season, averaging 2.0 ppg. in 3.5 minpg.


  • At 6:50 PM, Blogger WeRDevos said…

    Brian Cook

    Position: PF
    Born: 12/4/80
    Height: 6-10 / 2,08
    Weight: 240 lbs. / 108,9 kg.
    College: Illinois '03

    Very skilled on the offensive end... Good footwork... Has three-point range... Lacks defensive toughness... Foul prone.

    Attended the Lincoln HS in Lincoln, Illinois.
    Played college ball at Illinois from 1999 to 2003.
    Selected by the Los Angeles Lakers as 24th overall pick in the 2003 NBA Draft.
    Signed with the Los Angeles Lakers in July 2003.
    Traded to the Orlando Magic in November 2007.
    Selected to the McDonald's All-American Game in 1999.
    Big Ten Co-Freshman of the Year in 2000.
    Won the Big Ten Conference regular season in 2001.
    Named to the Big Ten Conference 2nd Team in 2001.
    Won the 2001 World Championship For Young Men with the US Team.
    Played in the Global Games in 2001.
    Named 2nd Team All-District 11 in 2002.
    Won the Big Ten Conference tournament in 2003.
    Led the Big Ten in scoring in 2003.
    Named Big Ten Player of the Year by conference coaches and media in 2003.
    Won the Tribune Silver Basketball as Big Ten's most valuable player in 2003.
    Finalist for the Wooden Award and Naismith Award in 2003.
    Named All-America 3rd Team by AP in 2003.
    Son of Norm Cook, who played for the Boston Celtics. His uncle played collegiate basketball for Duke.

  • At 6:51 PM, Blogger WeRDevos said…

    Maurice Evans

    Position: SG
    Born: 11/08/78
    Height: 6-5 / 1,96
    Weight: 220 lbs. / 99,8 kg.
    College: Texas '01

    Great athlete... Excellent leaping skills... Very strong... Can score in the paint... Decent jump shot... A little bit undersized for his position.

    Attended the Wichita Collegiate HS.
    Played college ball at Wichita State and Texas until 2001.
    Never drafted by an NBA team.
    Signed with the Minnesota Timberwolves in 2001-02. Waived in October 2002.
    Signed with Olympiakos (Greece) in October 2002. Left the team in May.
    Joined Benetton Treviso (Italy) in August 2003.
    Signed with Dynamo Moscow (Russia) in July 2004.
    Joined the Sacramento Kings in October 2004.
    Signed with the Detroit Pistons in September 2005.
    Traded to the Los Angeles Lakers in June 2006.
    Traded to the Orlando Magic in November 2007.
    Named Kansas 3A Player of the Year in 1996. Led Wichita Collegiate HS to the Kansas state championship.
    Named Kansas High School Gatorade Player of the Year in 1997.
    Named to the All-Missouri Valley Conference Newcomer Team in 1998.
    Named to the All-Missouri Valley Conference 2nd Team in 1999.
    Named to the All-Big 12 3rd Team in 2001. Named to the All-Newcomer Team.
    Named MVP of the Italian League All-Star Game in 2004.
    Won the Italian Cup with Benetton Treviso in 2004.

  • At 6:58 PM, Blogger WeRDevos said…

    Brian Cook:

    Scouting report: A good long-range shooter with a quick release, Cook is extremely accurate despite a line-drive trajectory and is deadly on pick-and-pop plays. He also has the size to get points in the paint occasionally, supplementing the scoring he provides from the perimeter.

    Cook is a below-average defender -- though he has good size for a power forward, he's soft and not a great athlete, and his energy level at that end comes and goes. That's put him in Phil Jackson's doghouse on occasion the past couple years. Cook has been pressed into service as a smallball center at times, which spaces the floor for Kobe Bryant but only magnifies Cook's defensive shortcomings.

    2007-08 outlook: The Lakers' frontcourt logjam doesn't appear to have eased, as Chris Mihm returns after missing last season and Ronny Turiaf is pushing for a bigger role. Cook might end up being the odd man out in this scenario, even though he's plenty good enough to be a rotation player for just about any team in the league. An enterprising club might inquire about his availability via trade; if not, Cook can opt out of his contract after the season and test the free-agent waters.

  • At 6:59 PM, Blogger Big Figure said…

    I liked trevor,but i like this deal even more. We get two pieces,which both can shoot the three. Cook is solid and evans can jump out of the gym. I wonder if they'll be available against the spurs?

  • At 7:01 PM, Blogger WeRDevos said…

    Maurice Evans:

    2006-07 season: For a guy with such hops, you'd think he'd be a better finisher. Evans only made 50.2 percent of his shots in the immediate basket area last season, a big reason his shooting percentage declined upon moving to L.A. from Detroit. While Evans went to the rim much more often than he did with the Pistons, his inability to convert from close range made his numbers worse overall.

    Evans at least got to the line a bit more, and remained a decent 3-point option (36.1 percent). He also kept control of the rock, sporting the sixth-best turnover ratio among shooting guards. But it would be nice if some of those drives would benefit his teammates -- Evans ranked 61st out of 64 shooting guards in assist ratio.

    Scouting report: Though only 6-5, Evans' offensive game is better suited to small forward -- he's a poor dribbler but is strong and quite athletic. He'll throw down jams on the break but isn't as good in the halfcourt, where his lack of finesse becomes more apparent and his short arms make it hard for him to finish. He can hit 3-pointers from the corner and will pull up from 17 off the dribble going to his left, plus he's a good rebounder for his size.

    Evans is a stay-at-home defender who rarely gambles for steals, but his size can be a negative when he's used at small forward. That happened much more in his last two stops than in L.A., where he's been used almost exclusively as Kobe Bryant's backup.

    2007-08 outlook: Evans can look forward to another year of playing 12 minutes a night behind Kobe and then picking up any leftover minutes when the Lakers go small. He's a known quantity who has been very consistent the past three seasons, and he has a friendly contract. He should put up similar results to last year's, with the possibility of a slight uptick if his shooting percentage on the inside shots recovers.

  • At 7:04 PM, Blogger Big Figure said…

    Trev really didnt have a role anyway so we didnt lose anything,but we did gain some quality depth by trading trev and it was time for bo. Neither player spreads the floor,and under SVG thats seems like a priority.

  • At 7:06 PM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    Pretty stunning news; I heard it on the 6 PM Eastern edition of SportsCenter.

    I hate like heck to see the Magic give up on Ariza so soon and trade him; he's just 22 and as we saw last season he has a wealth of untapped potential and athleticism. Bottom line is, he wasn't much of a factor in the playing rotation this season, averaging just the 10 1/2 minutes a game, and the Magic need someone like Cook, who will give the Magic much-needed help on the frontline in spelling Dwight.

    If Cook can do what he is supposed to do, and give the Magic valuable minutes off the bench, then the trade will have been worth it, at least for the short term. I don't know how much playing time Evans will receive, but it looks like this will move J.J. Redick even further down the bench.

    I'm familiar with Cook, because I saw him play on TV on many occasions with the University of Illinois basketball team, and I always thought he was a pretty good shooter and rebounder.

  • At 7:20 PM, Blogger OVERWADED said…


    Cook replaces Garrity.
    Evans replaces Ariza.

  • At 7:21 PM, Blogger WeRDevos said…

    Trading unrealized potential in his 4th year for a couple solid but unspectacular veterans seems pretty sound to me.

    Good news is they used the Battie exception which means they won't do something stupid like sign PJ Brown or Chris Webber.

    At worst, Brian Cook is another Battie and Evans can match Ariza's stats. And both shoot the 3 better than either Ariza or Battie so there is real upside to this trade.

    Cook is below average on defense, but Garrity is below awful on defense. He should get Garrity's 15 minutes a game and be a good upgrade for the Magic.

    Evans may have trouble getting minutes behind Bogans and Dooling.

    Redick probably saw his season wash out with Evans arriving. He is looking like more of a bust leaving Otis Smith 0-3 in the first round.

    The Magic still have the ability to add a high cost veteran at the trade deadline. Garrity, Dooling, Arroyo, Augustine, Redick & Foyle all have expiring contracts or team options for next year totaling $15 million if another team is looking to dump a player or two.

    Not a bad day at the office for Otis.

  • At 7:25 PM, Blogger WeRDevos said…

    There is a rule of thumb in the NBA that a player will either make a leap by age 21 or 22, or it's not going to happen.

    Trevor is 22 and in his fourth year. This should have been his year, and it didn't happen. Mark him down as a (good) role player, which is what the Magic got in return.

    All that matters now is that Dwight has made the leap and the Magic must surround him with the role players he needs around him to win in the playoffs. This trade should help fill that bill.

  • At 7:43 PM, Blogger john said…

    Well now hes a Laker and as a Laker fan i am so relieved to have finally gotten ride of the most slow footed uninspired player i have seen on the lakers in quiet some time (Brian Cook). Plus his salary situation was a nightmare. What is Orlando’s GM thinking? There must be more to this story, you are the first person i have read that mentioned anything about an injury. I honestly would take a forever injured player with 1 yr on his contract than Brian Cook with 3 yrs left, so either way i am happy. I am sad to see Maurice Evans go, he is a likable decent role player…. with back problems.

  • At 7:46 PM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    That's not always the case with NBA players making a leap by age 21 or 22.. Look at Tyson Chandler with the Hornets now. He spent 5 disappointing, injury-prone, inconsistent seasons with the Bulls (who drafted him out of HS) before they finally gave up on him. Now, with the Hornets, Chandler improved by leaps and bounds last season and is averaging a double-double this season.

    I think today's trade was a good trade for both teams. The Lakers got a very talented, athletic young player, while the Magic got much-needed frontline help and a defensive-minded guard, and both can shoot the three. There's no question that both Ariza and Cook will get a lot more playing time now on their new teams.

    Like the old saying goes... to get something, you have to give up something.

  • At 8:02 PM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    The Magic were able to use their 2.6 million dollar exception (from the season-ending injury to Tony Battie) in this deal for Cook and Evans, so Cook's salary shouldn't be that much of a burden to the Magic, although I don't know the exact numbers.

    Ariza on the trade:

    "It's for the best. I just wanted to play, and I wasn't getting to do that here. We were winning and I couldn't really argue with that. But me being a competitor, I wanted to play.

    "I hope I get a chance in L.A.- that's all I can ask for."

    "I'm excited. I'm going home. It's a business, everybody knows that,"

  • At 9:37 PM, Blogger WeRDevos said…

    There's always someone to come along and bad mouth the recently traded.

    If the Lakers salary problems revolve around a guy making 3.5 million per for 3 years they are in deeper trouble than we thought.

    Cook isn't coming here to start, he's coming to give 15-20 minutes off the bench. He should do well playing alongside Dwight Howard and either Turk or Lewis.

    Ariza looked like he was going to develop here, but was too inconsistent. I'm not sure how a slasher who can't shoot will work in the famed triangle alongside Kobe. Ariza will have a real learning curve. I wish him well.

    Tyson Chandler? Did anyone in Chicago care when he was traded away? He was a #2 overall pick and has averaged 7 points and 8 rebounds for his career. He hasn't exactly leaped anywhere. He's developed into a fine role player, not exactly the goal of an overall number 2 pick.

  • At 1:15 AM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    To answer your question, WeR, no one in Chicago did care when the Bulls got rid of Chandler for the reasons I previously stated, and also because they had stunned the NBA by signing Ben Wallace away from the Pistons. Many people thought Wallace was the missing piece to the puzzle that would make CHI a serious championship contender, but how has that turned out?

    You're right in what you said, that Chandler doesn't have career stats to befit an overall number two pick; but he's come a long way to average a double-double after he regressed noticeably his last year in CHI just 2 seasons ago. My point was that it's possible for a player to make significant improvement in his game after the age of 21-22 (Chandler's 25), if that player joined the NBA in his teens, as we were discussing about Ariza.

    There's a poll currently on the Sentinel, asking people if the Magic made the right move in trading Ariza. The results so far as of 1 AM:

    Yes... 424 (34.4%)
    No.... 553 (44.9%)
    Not Sure... 254 (20.6%)

    Even though I like Ariza's potential and athleticism, I did vote 'yes' the Magic made the right move.

  • At 7:52 AM, Blogger WeRDevos said…

    I think we are talking about two different things. Most of the NBA greats tend to not have their first great years until that 21-22 age or years 3 or 4. That was true of Jordan, Kobe, Barkley, Nowitski, etc. There are always exceptions.

    Wade did it two years ago. LeBron last year. And now it's Howards turn. 22/15, improved free throws and not fouling out of games is impressive. Now he has to keep it up and do it in the playoffs.

    Guys like Chandler and Curry never made the leap. Both are good players but miss something that makes the whole package. Chandler doesn't score, Curry doesn't play defense, etc. Not saying I wouldn't like Chandler on the Magic, just that he turned out to not be a guy to build a team around.

    It's thrilling to see Howard become the guy we hoped he would be. He is already one of the leagues 5 or 6 best players and he will continue to get better over the next 5-6 years. Wow.

    I am also happy that, for once, the Magic realize what they have and are making strides to put role players and depth around their core. They haven't even tried to do that since the days of Brian Shaw coming off the bench.

  • At 1:00 PM, Blogger Big Figure said…

    Whether age plays a part in a player quote un quote "budding" or not really isnt the issue,even though you guys debate it well. The issue is "how long were we gonna wait on trevor to improve certain areas that would make him fit our new style of play"? Trev doesnt dribble well,trev doesnt shoot it well,trev isnt a good passer,he's built like a linky small-forward with an athletic center or power forwards game. Alot like grant,trev will have to develope a three point shot over years of playing and when the athletic ability starts to fade usually thats when guys who werent shooters become more outside oriented,but right now while trev can really on his athletic ablity no need to become a jumpshooter in his mind. At best right now trev works on hitting a 16 foot stationary jumpshot without any defensive pressure but thats about it,i mean there's so many more aspects of shooting that he doesnt even show the ability to improve on,like shooting off the dribble going left or right (trev doesnt dribble well,so he'd have to improve his dribble first,then work on shooting off of it,which is basically re-teaching him his game at 22,its way to late to teach him to be a shooter),the three point shot itself (which would take hours everyday in the gym becoming a respectable three point threat,and i've never heard of trev putting in those kind of hours),fade aways and fall aways out of the post (trev tries to get to the basket at all costs because of no jumper,but isnt a great free throw shooter which missed free throws still hurt your offense),basically if you put him on the floor for us it clogs the lane on the offensive end. I liked trev dont get me wrong,but i always looked at him as an athletic defender who plays without the ball and can finish in the open court,without a whole lot of upside. Good trade for both sides,the lakers get an athletic wing to back-up kobe that doesnt have to play alot of minutes. Cook was the odd man out in their front-court,mihm's back and bynum/brown give them a solid front-court. Magic get depth,and as stated before both shoot the ball from the outside which is how we now play.


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