After months of speculation, the Miami Heat have traded guard Mario Chalmers to the Memphis Grizzlies as part of a package involving second-year forward James Ennis.
In exchange, the Heat will receive point guard Beno Udrih, forward Jarnell Stokes and a second-round pick in a deal first reported by Yahoo Sports and later confirmed by the Miami Heat on Tuesday.
"This is an tough day for myself and the organization in trading Mario Chalmers and James Ennis," Pat Riley said in a team statement. "Mario was a part of two championships with us and Ennis is a solid young player, but it is part of the business and it was a move necessary to make because of our crowded backcourt. We feel that it is in the best interest of Mario and we want him to be successful and be a part of a good team.
"We wish them nothing but the best. We would also like to welcome Beno Udrih, an accomplished veteran and someone that has playoff and championship experience, and the addition of Jarnell Stokes, a young player that we would like to develop."
As noted by Adrian Wojnarowski, the deal will save Miami about $6 million in luxury tax payments.
Memphis will use part of a trade exception to absorb Ennis into the deal. The exception came out of a deal that sent Jon Leuer to the Phoenix Suns.
The teams have scheduled a trade call with the NBA office on Tuesday to finalize the deal, a league source said.
Chalmers was in the final year of his contract and Ennis' recently restructured deal guaranteed him the full season's salary if he made the opening day roster.
Wojnarowski noted that Chalmers "was not part of the Heat's future plans". No doubt the growth of Tyler Johnson in his second season and the emergence of promising rookie Josh Richardson helped convince the Heat to part ways with their long-time point guard, who has come off the bench since Goran Dragic was acquired.
Udrih gives the Heat another lefty Slovenian point guard who is averaging 5.9 points, 3.3 assists and 1.1 rebounds in 15 minutes this season. He is shooting 36.4 percent (4-11) from 3-point territory and 43.5 percent overall from the field.
The team released detailed player info for the four players involved in the deal:
Udrih, entering his 12th NBA season, has appeared in 756 career games (267 starts) and averaged 8.7 points, 3.5 rebounds, 2.1 rebounds and 22.5 minutes while shooting 46.3 percent from the field, 34.9 percent from three-point range and 82.9 percent from the foul line. The Slovenian guard scored a season-high 13 points at Indiana on October 29 and has dished out a season-high six assists on two separate occasions this season. The two-time NBA champion has appeared in 53 postseason games and averaged 4.5 points, 1.2 assists, 1.0 rebounds and 11.3 minutes while shooting 38.8 percent from the field and 80.4 percent from the foul line.
Stokes, drafted by the Utah Jazz in the second round (35th overall) in the 2014 NBA Draft, has appeared in 21 career NBA games (two starts) and averaged 2.7 points, 1.7 rebounds and 6.2 minutes while shooting 56.8 percent from the field. He appeared in 23 games (14 starts) with the Iowa Energy of the NBA Development League last season and averaged 15.1 points, 11.3 rebounds, 1.1 assists and 32.0 minutes while shooting 61.7 percent from the field. Stokes appeared in 87 games while at Tennessee (84 starts) and averaged 13.0 points, 9.6 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 1.08 blocks and 29.7 minutes while shooting 62.8 percent. He finished his collegiate career first in offensive rebounds, fourth in double-doubles, eighth in total rebounds and 14th in blocks on the school's all-time list.
Chalmers has appeared in 525 career games with the HEAT (383 starts) and averaged 8.8 points, 3.8 assists, 2.4 rebounds, 1.51 steals and 27.8 minutes while shooting 42.2 percent from the field, 36 percent from three-point range and 77.6 percent from the foul line. He finished among Miami's all-time leaders in steals (2nd), assists (3rd), games played (4th), three-point field goals made (4th), minutes played (6th), starts (6th), points (11th), free throw percentage (11th), double-figure scoring efforts (12th), field goals made (13th), free throws made (13th), rebounds (15th), field goal percentage (19th) and three-point field goal percentage (20th). Chalmers was the starting guard on two HEAT championship teams, appearing in 99 career postseason games (73 starts) and averaged 8.8 points, 3.2 assists, 2.5 rebounds, 1.19 steals and 29.1 minutes while shooting 42.9 percent from the field, 35.7 percent from three-point range and 74.2 percent from the foul line.
Ennis, drafted by the HEAT in the second round (50th overall) in the 2013 NBA Draft, has appeared in 65 career games with the HEAT (three starts) and averaged 4.8 points, 2.7 rebounds and 16.3 minutes while shooting 40.9 percent from the field, 32.6 percent from three-point range and 84 percent from the foul line.