The Clippers have agreed to a trade for New York Knicks forward Zach Randolph and guard Mardy Collins in exchange for guard Cuttino Mobley and forward Tim Thomas, a league source told the Daily News Friday afternoon.
Randolph is a dominant low post threat, having averaged 16.4 points and 8.2 rebounds in his eight seasons in the NBA. This season with the Knicks, he’s excelled in new coach Mike D’Antoni’s system, averaging 20.5 points and a career-high 12.5 rebounds.
Mobley is averaging 13.7 points this season, Thomas is averaging 9.5 points and 4.6 rebounds.
The Clippers have long-admired Randolph’s athleticism and offensive game.
And with the team averaging a paltry 90.9 points a game, better only than three other teams in the league, the Clippers jumped at the chance to acquire him.
They tried to land Randolph in the summer as well, offering the Knicks a similar salary-saving deal they later offered Denver for center Marcus Camby. The Knicks passed on that deal, preferring to hold Randolph for real assets, as opposed to just salary-cap relief.
By acquiring Mobley and Thomas, whose contracts both expire in two seasons, the Knicks better position themselves as players for the wild free agent summer of 2010, when stars like LeBron James, Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade will be free agents.
Randolph’s contract has three years and approximately $48 million remaining on it.