Vince Carter joined the Memphis Grizzlies this offseason.
Vince Carter joined the Memphis Grizzlies this offseason.
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Tracking Tar Heel NBA Alums
Release: 08/06/2014

By Adam Lucas

Eight Tar Heels changed teams this summer in the NBA. Here's a complete look at how they might fit in their new homes.

Vince Carter

From: Mavs

To: Grizzlies

How: Memphis signed Carter, a free agent, to a reported three-year, $12 million deal. 

Why: Carter, who will switch back to his familiar No. 15 jersey with the Grizzlies, will provide some veteran influence for a young Memphis team. His new organization, which has struggled from the perimeter, will also ask him to provide some three-point reliability. And, as the Spurs saw during the playoffs, Carter can still hit big three-pointers:

Carter also still has a little elevation left in those legs, as this clip of his top 10 plays from the 2013-14 season shows:

Ed Davis

From: Grizzlies

To: Lakers

How: A free agent, Davis signed a two-year contract.

Why: Davis was in an awkward spot in Memphis, where it felt like he could never quite crack the regular rotation, but occasionally played very well when given the opportunity.

But he's going to a very crowded frontcourt situation in Los Angeles. Tar Heel connection alert: Davis will wear jersey No. 21, which was Laker GM Mitch Kupchak's number at Carolina. Good photo of the two together can be found here.

Wayne Ellington

From: Mavs

To: Knicks, then to Sacramento

How: Two Tar Heels changed teams in a summer trade, as Ellington went to New York, while Raymond Felton relocated to Dallas. Multiple players were involved in this trade, as both teams tried to find better fits for players who perhaps no longer fit their future plans.

Why: Well, hold on just a second. Ellington didn't have time to get comfortable in New York, as he was traded to Sacramento on Aug. 6.


Raymond Felton

From: Knicks

To: Mavs

How: Felton was part of the same multiplayer trade that sent Ellington to New York. 

Why: Felton's stint with the Knicks proved to be a bad match all the way around, and he seems to welcome the opportunity to start over with Dallas. He will have something to prove this year, and wants to show he's still an elite point guard. The Mavs have had success in the past with players in a similar situation as Felton who are coming off a bad year. 

Brendan Haywood

From: Hornets

To: Cavs

How: Haywood was part of a trade that included Scotty Hopson and Dwight Powell.

Why: It will be interesting to see what role Haywood might play with the Cavs, who as you might have heard, also made another roster change this summer, acquiring LeBron James. This is another situation, similar to Carter, where Haywood will provide a veteran presence on a younger team, but he'll also need to get healthy, as the big man missed all of last season with a foot injury.

Kendall Marshall

From: Lakers

To: Bucks

How: Waived by Los Angeles, signed by Milwaukee

Why: The Lakers acquired Jeremy Lin, and then waived Marshall, who had a solid first season with the team (8.0 ppg, 8.8 apg).

There was talk the Lakers might be interested in bringing Marshall back after he cleared waivers, but Milwaukee acted first. The move reunites Marshall with John Henson, and it also means he'll play under new head coach Jason Kidd, an opportunity Marshall is very excited about.

Marvin Williams

From: Jazz

To: Hornets

How: Williams signed a two-year, $14 million deal as a free agent.

Why: The player welcomed the opportunity to return to a state he called "a second home" (and here's guessing you see a lot of Williams in Chapel Hill on off days this season), while Charlotte has a variety of roles in mind for Williams, who might have the chance to start immediately. One of those responsibilities will be stretching the floor as a three-point shooter, where Williams has shown noticeable improvement during his pro career.

Tyler Zeller

From: Cavs

To: Celtics

How: Zeller was part of a three-team trade that also included the Nets.

Why: This seems like a terrific fit for Zeller, who was in a locker room with a healthy amount of knuckleheads in Cleveland and now goes to Boston, where there would appear to be natural chemistry with Celtics head coach Brad Stevens, who has deep Indiana ties. Indeed, Stevens is already excited about the opportunity to utilize Zeller's unique skills.

UNC North Carolina Men's Basketball

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