On November 1st, 1993, the Indiana Pacers traded forward Detlef Schrempf to the Seattle Supersonics for forward Derrick McKey and guard/forward Gerald Paddio.
In five years with Indiana Schrempf averaged 17 ppg, 8.6 rpg, and 4.1 apg on 51% fg and won the sixth man of the year award twice. His last year with Indiana was a major success. He was an All-Star while averaging 19.1 ppg, 9.5 rpg, and 6 apg.
McKey averaged 13.4 ppg and 4.2 rpg as a starter for Seattle in the previous season. Paddio was a throw in averaging just 3.9 ppg and 1.2 rpg in just 41 games.
Both players went on to successful stops with their teams. Schrempf made the all-star team twice with Seattle and he was a starter on the Sonics 1996 NBA Finals squad.
McKey started at small forward for Indiana from 1993-1997. During his tenure with Indiana, he was twice named to the NBA All-Defensive Second team. Paddio lasted less than a month before being waived late in November by Indiana.
Derrick McKey on Coach George Karl:
"Coach had his own personality and the type people he wants on the team. That was probably the main thing - our personalities did not agree. But that’s fine. He’s got his job to do."“I did a lot of things that didn’t show up in the box score. People are going to say what they want to say anyway, but the players on this team and around the league know what I can do. Your peers are what counts.”
On his reaction when notified of trade:
"I said, ‘OK, fine’."
Before return to Seattle:
"It’s a business situation. They thought they needed more offense at that position (small forward), so they got Detlef. The Pacers wanted defense, so they got me. That’s pretty much the way it is in the NBA."
"The game? Hmmm, it’s no big deal. Just another game we’ve got to win."
On the Pacers current team:
"It reminds me some of what it was like earlier in my career with the Sonics. We were changing all the time and weren’t winning consistently. There wasn’t much respect out there for us. But coach is real fundamental and into teaching. I like it, and if he gets on me, I don’t care. I’m not one of those guys who’s ever been bothered by a coach getting on me."
"I just do my job. It’s not like I don’t have the respect of my teammates. I’ve always had the respect of my teammates."
Detlef Schrempf on trade:
"Every player wants to get a chance of winning the championship. I didn’t see us making the next step in the next two or three years (at Indiana). I’m excited about being in Seattle. I can’t promise we’ll win a championship. But I can promise I’ll do my best.
Seattle Coach George Karl before McKey’s return to Seattle:
"Derrick gave us something that nobody else has. He’s a 6-10 guy who can guard all five positions on the floor. Don’t think it didn’t cause me to lose some sleep because we didn’t have that anymore. But now we have a guy who is consistent in the halfcourt offense."
Indiana Coach Larry Brown after trade:
"We all agreed that this would probably be the best thing for our team in the long run. I’ve gotten to see Derrick play a lot over the years… I don’t think the transition is going to be that severe. I would like to think that with a young kid like him… good athletes, we could put people in their normal position and go there."
Brown before McKey’s return to Seattle:
"It’s been tough since he was really hurt when we got him. It was tough for Derrick because he’s expected to fill a big void for us and he’s not able to perform. He wasn’t healthy, and he hadn’t practiced. But since he’s come back, it’s been a different story."
"You see, Derrick McKey is a coach’s player. He can play for anyone because he’s such a great all-around talent, and he can do anything. Detlef is the same kind of all-around talent, but Derrick’s begins on the defensive end. He won with defense in Seattle, and some of what his strength is has rubbed off on the other players."
"People talk about how quiet he is, but he’s really been helpful. He gives a lot of insight to players in how to guard certain teams and what their weaknesses are. The whole team listens to him, and it makes my job a lot easier. Having players like him is what pro basketball is all about for me."
"I’ve said this a number of times, but Bobby’s (Jones) the greatest defender I’ve ever been around. Derrick’s on the same level. But he has more offensive skills, and it’s up to me to start running the offense through him."
"Sure it’s tough losing Detlef. All the players said he was gone (via free agency) after this year. So instead of losing him for nothing, we got Derrick McKey. Now that he’s getting healthy, we’re winning. And that’s no coincidence."
Sonics President Bob Whitsitt:
We’ve just added an All-Star to our team. Any time you can do that, I think you can’t help but become a better team.”
Before McKey’s Return:
"Some of the players, you’re glad you traded them and you don’t say a word about them when they come back. Derrick’s a guy I always liked. He’s an excellent basketball player who played well for us for six years, and I hated to trade him. Trading him was not a case of anything he did wrong or didn’t fit in. It was a case of getting better at an area we needed to get better at. There are very few players in the NBA we would even have considered trading him for. Detlef was obviously one of them."
Indiana General Manager Donnie Walsh:
"Detlef was a great player for us. He came here from Dallas as an unheralded player. He became the sixth man of the year twice, was an all-star last year."
"To keep Detlef here, I had to feel real deep in my heart that we were going to have him here next year, or else we stood a very difficult chance of losing him for nothing."
"With the recent signings in the NBA, and the one-year out rule, that just enhanced the fact that this was going to develop into a bidding war. It was either going to put us in a difficult position as a franchise, or we were just going to lose Detlef because he chose to go somewhere else."
"I felt it was opportune for us when we had a chance to get a player of Derrick McKey’s caliber, and also Paddio who has the ability to shoot the ball, that we go ahead and do the deal."
Sonics Teammate Nate McMillan:
"When all the guys on the team are looking to do a certain thing, like score, you need somebody in there to be unselfish, to keep the team balanced and happy. That’s what Derrick was doing. Like myself, he sacrificed his game, his ego and his pride to help keep his teammates happy. When the five starters are out there, there are different personalities, and I mean different personalities. You go up and down the court two or three times, and if some of your teammates don’t get the ball, they get upset, they quit playing, and you don’t want to deal with that. Me and Derrick both knew that."
"I think he didn’t do certain things because of the structure of the team. He is very unselfish, too unselfish. People wanted him to look to his offense more, and when he didn’t he was inconsistent. But he always said he wanted to allow other guys the (scoring) opportunities."
Sonics Teammate Sam Perkins on Derrick McKey:
"He (McKey) was really well-liked on this team. I liked him, too. He was fun to be around. I also liked him as a player, because of his court savvy and court awareness."