Originally written on NorthWest Sports Beat  |  Last updated 11/19/14
NBA Contract Updates

Five Players from Nicolas Batum’s 2008 draft class have signed contract extensions, but the Trail Blazers small forward is not one of them.

Batum and Portland could not agree on a deal and he will become a free agent after the season.

His agent Bouna Ndiaye and the Blazers had been in talks for weeks, but could not get a deal done.

Ndiaye stated, “They say they love him but they didn’t offer him something fair, so that’s it.

We tried and there’s no deal. On July 1 we’re going to look at the market first before we come back to the Blazers. That’s for sure.”

At the end of the season the Blazers will likely tender him a qualifying offer, as he has been solid this season coming off the bench to average 11.4 ppg and 4 rpg.

The TrailBlazers will have a chance to match any offer another team makes and I think they should do so, as Batum’s future is a bright one.

Some team or teams will make him a good offer since there is always a market for a small forward that can score and hit the glass.

The Blazers will have a chance to match any offer for Batum

The Blazers have experienced the qualifying offer situation first-hand in the last few off seasons, offering big free agent contracts to Paul Millsap in 2009 and Wesley Matthews in 2010.

They missed out on Millsap, as Utah matched the offer, but they landed Mathews.

Matthews has been solid this season averaging 12.9 ppg, but it is too bad they could not get Millsap, who has turned into one of the better power forward in the league and has averaged 17 ppg and 9.3 rpg this season.

When asked about the failure to get a deal done Blazers interim GM Chad Buchanan stated, “In no way does any of this reflect on how we feel about Nic, it’s just part of business.

We love Nic and we’ve told him that. But a deal has got to be fair for both sides.

They have every right to ask for what they feel is his fair value and we have to look at everything from our perspective. We have to get to a number that allows us to have payroll flexibility and be competitive, too.”

It looked as if not getting a deal done was a bad move for Nicolas Batum after he went down a couple games ago with what looked like a major knee injury.

However, after the MRI it is just a bone bruise and he will only miss a few games. Before his injury he was playing well averaging 15 ppg in his last 3 games.

His season high for the season was when he blew up for 29 points in a tough 107-105 loss to the Rockets on the road.

The end of the season will show how Batum’s contract situation plays out, but I for one would like to see him in a Blazers’ uniform for the next few years.


© Jason Green for North West Sports Beat, 2012. | Permalink | No comment |

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