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Dirkenstien
01-09-2004, 07:29 PM
January 9, 2004
Spurs Sign Charlie Ward

The San Antonio Spurs today announced that they have signed free agent guard Charlie Ward. Per club policy terms of the agreement were not announced.

Ward spent his first 10 NBA seasons with the New York Knicks before being traded to Phoenix as a part of a multi-player deal on January 5. He was waived by the Suns on January 6.

“We are thrilled that Charlie Ward has decided to join the Spurs family,” said Spurs general manager R.C. Buford. “He is a veteran leader and a proven winner. He is a well rounded player who can impact the game on both offense and defense.”

The 6-2, 185 pound guard has appeared in 580 regular season games with the Knicks, averaging 6.5 points, 4.2 assists and 1.28 steals per game. This season, Ward averaged 8.7 points, 4.9 assists and 1.34 steals in 35 games for the Knicks. Ward, a career .366 shooter from behind the arc, currently ranks eighth in the NBA in three-point field goal percentage at .428 (59-138).

The Tallahassee, Florida native was drafted 26th overall by the Knicks in 1994 after a stellar career at Florida State University. As a senior Ward won the 1993 Heisman Trophy, leading the Seminoles football team to a national title, while averaging 10.5 points and 4.9 assists for the basketball team. Ward left Florida State as the all-time leader in steals (236) and fifth in assists (396) despite playing just one full season.

Ward has been heavily involved in many community initiatives throughout his NBA career. Ward was honored with the 2002 Greater YMCA Sports Triangle award and was a finalist for the 2002 Home Team Community Service Award. An active member of the Big Brothers/Big Sisters program and the Starlight Foundation, Ward hosts numerous basketball clinics in the summers and is the Florida spokesman for the “Born to Read” program.

Ward is expected to be in uniform with the Spurs on Saturday night when they take on the Indiana Pacers at the SBC Center.