May 23, 2019
In 2003, when the Philadelphia 76ers traded $125,000 for the draft rights to Kyle Korver, they never would have guessed their cash was going toward office equipment.
Korver, who's gone on to become one of the greatest three-point shooters in NBA history, has joked about the story ever since ESPN's Zach Lowe pulled it out of ex-Nets GM Rod Thorn in 2014.
The Nets used most of the $125,000 to cover the cost of the entry fee for their summer league team, but the remainder was used to buy a copy machine for one of the Net's offices.
“We gave away a good player for summer league,” Thorn said in 2014. “It was just one of those things we had to do. At least, that’s how I rationalized it.”
Over the weekend, Korver, now a member of the Utah Jazz, gave a commencement speech at his alma mater, Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska. In it, he revealed that his 16-year NBA career has outlasted the life of the copier, retelling the story to the school's new graduates.
"But it's OK," Korver said. "Because a couple of years ago, that copy machine broke. And I'm still playing."
Korver is fourth overall on the NBA's all-time list of three-point shooters with 2,351 shots made on 42.9% shooting.
On the other hand, a good copy machine can be expected to last anywhere from five to 10 years at the upper end. The Nets got their money's worth on that side of the deal.