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Lakers Send Adrian Branch to Nets

November 05, 1987

The Lakers got down to the 12-man NBA roster limit Wednesday by selling second-year guard Adrian Branch to the New Jersey Nets. The amount of cash was undisclosed, but it probably wasn't more than the minimum $75,000 salary Branch was earning.

The Lakers also placed forward Billy Thompson on the injured list, where he must remain for a minimum of five games. Thompson hasn't played since suffering a hyperextended left knee, as well as a deep bruise below the kneecap, in the playoffs last April.

Thompson's absence meant that guard Milt Wagner, his high school teammate in Camden, N.J., and at the University of Louisville, will start the season on the Laker roster.

Branch, a 6-foot 7-inch, 190-pound swingman from Maryland, appeared in 32 games for the Lakers last season. He averaged 4.3 points a game, with a high of 12 against Sacramento.

The Nets also acquired rookie forward Dallas Comegys from the Atlanta Hawks and put forward Mike O'Koren on the suspended list for failing to report.

The club also announced that forward Keith Lee has a disk problem in his back and forward Tony Brown will be out for the season following successful surgery for an Achilles' problem in his right foot.

The Nets will give the Hawks a second-round draft choice in either 1989 or 1990 for Comegys, depending on whether they reach the playoffs this year. If they do, the Hawks get the '89 choice.

Comegys was the Hawks' first selection in this year's NBA draft and the 21st player taken overall. He averaged 17.5 points and grabbed 332 rebounds in 31 games last season with DePaul.

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