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Nets acquire Lakers' Vujacic as part of three-team trade

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Los Angeles Lakers guard Sasha Vujacic has been acquired by the New Jersey Nets in a three-team trade that sent Nets guard-forward Terrence Williams to the Houston Rockets, the NBA teams said on Wednesday.

Los Angeles Lakers' Sasha Vujacic of Slovenia gestures to the official as he looks for a foul by Boston Celtics' Glen Davis during the second half of an NBA basketball game in Los Angeles, California, February 18, 2010. REUTERS/Danny Moloshok

The Nets also received first round draft picks from the Lakers (2011) and Rockets (2012), New Jersey said on its website (

Los Angeles obtained forward Joe Smith and two second-round draft picks from the Nets and gained the draft rights to Ukrainian Sergei Lishouk from the Rockets.

“This trade benefits our team in both the short and long term,” Nets general manager Billy King said in a statement.

“Sasha is a veteran NBA player who will add depth to our backcourt rotation, while the addition of the two future number one picks adds to our assets as we look to rebuild into a championship contender.”

The Nets are currently in last place in the Atlantic Division while the Lakers top the Pacific Division. Houston ranks last in the Southwest Division.

Slovenian Vujacic helped the Lakers win two NBA titles but had fallen out of favor recently.

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Williams, a 2009 first round draft choice, played in just 10 of the Nets’ 25 games this season and started none. He spent three games in the development league.

“We think a fresh start might be exactly what he needs to show what he can do,” Rockets general manager Daryl Morey told reporters.

Smith, in his 16th NBA season, signed with the Nets as a free agent in September.

Lishouk, a center, is currently playing for Valencia in Spain. He was originally drafted in 2004 by the Memphis Grizzlies, who later traded his draft rights to Houston.

Writing by Gene Cherry in Salvo, North Carolina; Editing by John Mehaffey