Tuesday, August 12, 1997 - Page updated at 12:00 AM

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NBA -- Mullin Traded To Indiana -- Golden State Gets Dampier, Ferrell For Five-Time All-Star


INDIANAPOLIS - Chris Mullin joined the Indiana Pacers today, leaving the Golden State Warriors and bringing his soft shot and outstanding passing game to a team now coached by former Olympic teammate Larry Bird.

Mullin, a five-time All-Star whose dozen years in the NBA have been marked by countless injuries, was traded from Golden State to the Pacers for Erick Dampier and Duane Ferrell.

Mullin, 34, a swingman, had one year remaining on his contract with the Warriors. Terms of his multiyear contract with the Pacers were not disclosed.

"When we were looking at our team, we felt that small forward was an area where we were a little weak, and we got the guy that can fill that spot," Bird said. "I don't think there is anyone better in the league than Chris Mullin to step in there as the second or third option and score points for you."

The trade is contingent on all three players passing physicals.

Dampier, a second-year, 6-foot-11 center, averaged 5.1 points and 4.1 rebounds in 72 games as a rookie last season. He was the Pacers' first-round pick after leading Mississippi State to the Final Four as a junior.

Mullin, 34, had his first injury-free year since 1991-92 last season and averaged 14.5 points in 79 games for the Warriors. The two-time Olympic gold medalist averaged more than 20 points from the 1987-88 season through 1992-93, with his best mark 26.5 in 1988-89.

Ferrell, 32, a forward, has been in the league nine seasons, the past three with the Pacers. He averaged 6.4 points last season.

Garnett spurns $102 million offer

MINNEAPOLIS - Kevin Garnett, the Minnesota Timberwolves' 6-foot-11 All-Star forward, has turned down a six-year, $102 million guaranteed contract, team owner Glen Taylor said, according to a published report.

Garnett's agent, Eric Fleisher, reportedly is seeking a six-year contract calling for an average of $22 million a year, the Star Tribune said today.

Taylor's offer would start Garnett at $11 million for the first year and peak at $26 million, averaging $17 million.

"Even though the offer was rejected, we will keep it on the table." `Taylor said. "We don't have any intention of trading Kevin. He is the heart of the team and our future."

Garnett, 21, can become a free agent at the end of the upcoming season, and a new contract would take effect with the start of the 1998-99 season.


-- Toronto hired Bob Kloppenburg as an assistant coach to work primarily with the team's defense. Kloppenburg, 74, spent the past two seasons with Denver as an assistant coach and coordinator of player personnel. He joined the team after 10 seasons with Seattle.

-- The NBA Players Association is investigating whether the Boston Celtics' voluntary, summer workout schedule isn't so voluntary after all. The union is concerned that the workout schedule of new coach Rick Pitino is cutting into players' vacation time and that players are being paid, or docked, based on whether they participate.

Copyright (c) 1997 Seattle Times Company, All Rights Reserved.


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