The Minnesota Timberwolves and Sacramento Kings pulled off what every NBA team always talks about during trade negotiations — a deal that actually helps both teams.
The Timberwolves rid themselves of malcontent Rashad McCants while the Kings continued their salary cap purge with their third trade in a week.
The Wolves got forward Shelden Williams and point guard Bobby Brown and shipped McCants and center Calvin Booth to Sacramento on Thursday.
Williams, the former Midwest City High School standout, was the fifth overall pick in 2006 by Atlanta. He has never fulfilled the promise he showed while at Duke and is averaging just 3.7 points and 2.6 rebounds for the Kings.
The opportunity for playing time is there in Minnesota. The T-Wolves have a big hole in the front frontcourt behind rookie Kevin Love.
"The future’s wide open for him,” T-Wolves general manager Jim Stack said of Williams. "This could be a good opportunity for him. … We’ll see what he can bring to the team. We’ll be evaluating him as we move along.”
In other trades Thursday:
→The Magic landed Rafer Alston from Houston in a three-team deal that also included Memphis.
→The Bulls traded unhappy guard Larry Hughes to the New York Knicks for Tim Thomas, Jerome James and Anthony Roberson.
CELTICS CALL UP
The Boston Celtics have recalled rookie guard J.R. Giddens, the former John Marshall High School standout, from their NBA Development League affiliate Utah Flash.
Giddens was recalled after being sent down to the Flash on Feb. 5. He appeared in three games since his second assignment with averages of 17.0 points and 3.0 rebounds.
OUT 2-3 WEEKS
Spurs star Manu Ginobili will be sidelined 2-3 weeks with a stress reaction in his right ankle.
It’s not the same ankle that Ginobili had surgery on last summer after the Olympics, forcing him to miss the first 12 games of the season.
AROUND THE LEAGUE
Final television ratings showed a big increase in viewership for the NBA All-Star game. The game in Phoenix on Sunday night, featuring a Kobe Bryant-Shaquille O’Neal reunion, earned a 4.5 national rating on TNT, the network said. That’s up 17 percent from last year.
Pacers All-Star Danny Granger will miss up to three weeks with a partial tendon tear in the sole of his right foot.
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS