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The offensively challenged Hornets signed an elite shooter in PejaStojakovic (right), added bench strength with guard Bobby Jackson and tradedfor a young center in Tyson Chandler. In New Orleans or Oklahoma City, theHornets will be contenders.
MOST IMPROVED TEAM
By trading with Florida for perennial Vezina Trophy candidate RobertoLuongo (above)--and signing him to a long-term deal--the Canucks are set ingoal for the foreseeable future. A bonus: They rid themselves of winger ToddBertuzzi, a perennial headache, in the deal.
The NBA's stingiest shooting defense got stingier when the Bulls landed BenWallace (left), the market's prize--and a four-time Defensive Player of theYear.
BIGGEST FREE-AGENT CATCH
Literally--at 6'9" Zdeno Chara (right) is the NHL's tallest player. Hewas also the most coveted free-agent defenseman and a huge upgrade on theBruins' blue line.
How did the Pistons replace Wallace? With Nazr Mohammed, a center who hasbeen a backup most of his career and was benched for five of the Spurs' playoffgames last season
WORST FREE-AGENT SIGNING
The Coyotes lavished $2.4 million on goon Georges Laraque--not a wise movein an era in which fighting is on the decline. Get used to him, Phoenix He gota no-trade clause.
Make that nonmove: After weeks of trade rumors--he has been shopped hard byG.M. Billy King--Allen Iverson (above) is still a 76er
MOST SURPRISING MOVE
Never mind that Chris Pronger helped the Oilers get within a game of theStanley Cup; his wife wanted out of Edmonton, so the team traded the defenseman(left) to the Ducks.
Veteran guard Sam Cassell (below), who has played with seven teams, putdown roots in Los Angeles by re-signing for two years with the Clippers.
After a career year (he scored 32 goals) itinerant winger Mike Sillingersigned a three-year deal with the Islanders--his 12th team, most among activeplayers.
JOHN W. MCDONOUGH (CASSELL); DARREN CARROLL (PRONGER); AL TIELEMANS (IVERSON); CLAY PATRICK MCBRIDE (WALLACE); JOHN SOKOLOWSKI/US PRESSWIRE (CHARA); RAY STUBBLEBINE/REUTERS (STOJAKOVIC); ANDY CLARK/REUTERS (LUONGO)