Trail Blazers resign forward J.J. Hickson

Back in March, the Sacramento Kings released forward  J.J. Hickson and the Portland Trail Blazers picked him up soon after for little money. He instantly provided offensive scoring from inside the paint and was a reliable back-up for LaMarcus Aldridge and quickly showed that he was a pretty nice piece to the team. After becoming a unrestricted free agent after the Blazers opted against extending him a qualifying offer, the team and Hickson reportedly agreed and signed a 1-year contract worth $4 million yesterday.

From the Portland Trail Blazers press release:

PORTLAND, Ore. – The Portland Trail Blazers have signed forward J.J. Hickson, it was announced today by General Manager Neil Olshey. Per team policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The Trail Blazers signed Hickson, 23, on March 21 for the remainder of last season after he was waived by Sacramento on March 19. He appeared in each of Portland’s final 19 games in 2011-12, including 10 starts.

“J.J. played very well for Portland late last year and we’re pleased to be able to bring him back for another season,” said Olshey. “He’s a very special athlete that will offer some depth on the front line and we expect him to pick up where he left off in April.”

Last season with Portland, Hickson averaged 15.1 points (54.3% FG), 8.3 rebounds, 1.2 assists and 0.95 blocks in 31.6 minutes per game. He led the Trail Blazers in rebounding and field goal percentage, while ranking third in scoring during his time in Portland. Hickson’s six double-doubles in the month of April tied for sixth in the NBA.

In four NBA seasons with Cleveland, Sacramento and Portland, Hickson has compiled averages of 9.0 points (49.0% FG), 5.8 rebounds and 21.3 minutes in 277 games (158 starts). He was originally selected by the Cavaliers with the 19th overall pick in the 2008 NBA Draft.

photo courtesy of