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Wesley Matthews Receives Second Annual Maurice Lucas Award

  1. Written by: trailblazers  / avg. rating: 4.7

    Award given to Trail Blazers player who best represents true spirit of Lucas

    PORTLAND, Ore. -
    Trail Blazers guard Wesley Matthews has been selected as the recipient of the 2011-12 Maurice Lucas Award, the team announced today. Trail Blazers President Larry Miller joined Pam Lucas, wife of Maurice Lucas, to present the award to Matthews at halftime of the Trail Blazers home finale against the Utah Jazz on Wednesday.

    The award is given annually to the Trail Blazers player who best represents the true spirit of Maurice Lucas through his contributions on the court and in the community, as well as in support of his teammates and the organization. In honor of the award, the Trail Blazers will make a $5,000 donation to the charity of Matthews' choice.

    "Wesley has been a consistent representation of what it takes to be a Trail Blazer this season," said Trail Blazers President Larry Miller. "Luke would have been proud of the toughness and resilience Wesley has shown, and would have wanted him to receive this award."

    In his third NBA season, Matthews is averaging 13.4 points, a career-high 3.3 rebounds and 1.7 assists while shooting 41.7% from the field. His three-point percentage (38.7%) and free throw percentage (85.1%) rank among league leaders. Matthews leads the team in steals (88) and is currently tied for fourth in the NBA in three-pointers made (118). He is the only Trail Blazers player to appear in every game this season.

    The Marquette product (also Lucas' alma mater) tied the franchise record by connecting on eight three-pointers against Sacramento on April 15. He shot the highest percentage (80.0%) of any Trail Blazers player who had previously made eight three-pointers in a game.

    Matthews became just the sixth NBA player since 1995 to score at least 33 points on 12 or fewer field goal attempts when he posted 33 points on 10-of-12 shooting against Utah on April 2.

    Matthews was selected as the recipient of the NBA's Kia Community Assist Award for February in recognition of his outstanding efforts in the community and his ongoing philanthropic and charitable work. Over the past two seasons he has led a winter coat drive in partnership with Fred Meyer that has collected over 1,100 coats, benefitting the Police Activities League. He also serves as a spokesperson for the Big Brothers, Big Sisters Sports Buddies program.

    The Trail Blazers dedicated the 2010-11 season to former Trail Blazers all-star Maurice Lucas after he passed away on October 31, 2010 at the age of 58. A beloved member of the franchise and the community, "The Enforcer" was a central figure on the Trail Blazers 1976-77 NBA Championship team. The Trail Blazers honored Lucas by retiring his uniform number (No. 20) on Nov. 4, 1988.

    He averaged 15.6 points, 8.7 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 0.72 blocked shots over five seasons (1976-80, 87-88) in Portland. During Portland's 1976-77 NBA Championship season, Lucas led the team in scoring (20.2), field goals made (8.0), free throws made (4.2), offensive rebounds (2.4) and minutes (36.2).

    Selected to the All-Star Game in three straight seasons from 1977-79, Lucas is one of four three-time All-Stars in Trail Blazers history (Clyde Drexler, Brandon Roy, Sidney Wicks).

    Lucas most recently served as an assistant coach with the Trail Blazers for five seasons from 2005-10, and previously in 1988-89.

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