The Washington Post

Highlights from Emeka Okafor, Trevor Ariza news conference

The Washington Wizards formally introduced veterans Emeka Okafor and Trevor Ariza on Friday afternoon in a news conference at Verizon Center.

The players were acquired this week from the New Orleans Hornets in exchange for Rashard Lewis and the 46th overall pick in the next week's NBA draft. Okafor averaged 9.9 points and 7.9 rebounds last season. Ariza averaged 10.8 points and 5.2 rebounds.

• Okafor missed the majority of games last season with a left knee injury. He said the injury was a result of the lockout. He began basketball activities this week and expects to be ready by the middle of next month. “It's a progression,” he said.

• Ariza found out he was traded to the Wizards after he finished a pickup game with John Wall in Los Angeles. He was first informed of the deal by Chris Paul's brother. He said of Wall: “I can't believe someone can be that fast with the basketball.”

• Okafor said he's excited to have his first chance at playing basketball in a major market. He spent his college career at Connecticut and has played professionally in Charlotte and New Orleans. “When I found out I was coming here I was happy.”

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