Jul 12

Haynes: RFA Nicolas Batum Signs Offer Sheet With Minnesota

By sarahhecht Posted in: NicolasBatum, Timberwolves

According Chris Haynes of, Trail Blazers restricted free agent Nicolas Batum has signed an offer sheet from the Minnesota Timberwolves.

A source close to the situation has indicated Nic Batum has just signed a Minnesota offer sheet. The contract is for 4 years, $46.5 million. The Blazers now have 72 hours to match the offer.

The reported signing comes after countless rumors of back-and-forth communication between Portland GM Neil Olshey and Minnesota President of Basketball Operations David Kahn. Olshey addressed the media yesterday following summer league practice on this very subject, I strongly suggest giving it a read.

Now the waiting game begins. The Trail Blazers have 72 hours to decide to match the offer sheet and retain Batum or let him ride into the Minnesota sunset.


  1. Hey Miss Sarah:
    I am glad an offer sheet is finally been made. This is the only thing Batum could do to get street value for his services.
    Olshey has said time and time again that he would match. So I believe he is a man of his word and we match.

    question? Batum is already on the books for 5.5 million, Right? How much money do we have left to spend before we match? If we spend all the cap space we would only be about 5.5 over the cap space is that correct?

    Well I guess you can't trust me that was more then one question. I just don't think we should let Batum go. If he is worth 11.5 to Minny then he is worth 11.5 to us.

    by Hg on 7/12/2012 10:04 AM
  2. Even tho Batum has been and will be a highlight reel for years to come,making someone stay where they don't want to be is never a good thing and never works out well.Yes his numbers will marginal and will help the bottom line in games,but he won't play his best(Rudy).He will only perform cause he is a basketball player but his heart won't be here.
    On the other hand,if he see's that the Blazers have changed and are going in a better direction everyone has a right to have a change of heart,but I don't see it happening cause he has been exposed to the outside world in Minnesota.Like Rudy,people will tell you what you want to hear to get you there and when it doesnt work out,you run home,like Rudy has done. I wish for both sides to really consider what is about to happen here and ponder the out come. Money can't buy you love,but people who love you can bring you the money,Thats Portland.

    by J.r. Hardy on 7/12/2012 10:12 AM
  3. The cap space question is a tricky one to answer right now. With all of the signings in the couple of days and not knowing specifically how much we started with, any number I threw out there would just be an educated guess. So I'm not going to go there.

    It'll be interesting to see how the next three days map out. And however it goes down I'm sure Olshey will have a solid reason behind it.

    by sarahhecht on 7/12/2012 10:13 AM
  4. @J.R. Hardy, I don't think Nic ever said he DIDN'T want to be in Portland, just that he'd prefer to be in Minny. Grass is always greener, right?

    Honestly, Nic is not the type to burn bridges. Much of the rumors and words are all negotiation tactics. As a fan it's a tough way to watch business get done, but I guess that's just how it goes.

    by sarahhecht on 7/12/2012 10:15 AM
  5. Isn't that the same thing but worded differently? The last thing I want is to see his talents go else where,but he has tasted the grass over there and made a hasty decision about how it felt going down.

    Heart,you gotta have heart.

    by J.r. Hardy on 7/12/2012 10:26 AM
  6. J.r. Hardy: I have to agree with Miss Sarah, partly because she is very seldom wrong. It must also be noted that Batum needed to sign an offer sheet to get his pay rate up or he would have had to taken the QO for a year or whatever the Blazers wanted to offer him and that would make him lose all his advantage. That is not a bad on Batum, that is just business. I think Portland and Batum has had a good relationship from the beginning, remember the plan was to get Batum to wait before he signed an offer sheet then we could sign him after we got all our dealings done. And except for odds and ends as filler we have just about done that and everything went as planned.
    I would like to see a veteran PG as a back up and use Lillard as our starting PG and use Nolan as a combo guard, I know Sarah, you don't like that, but that will give Nolan and Lillard more burn time. but if we get no one else we are OK in all positions so I am ready to match and go forward.

    by Hg on 7/12/2012 10:40 AM
  7. @ JR, I don't think it is the same. I can like two pairs of shoes but only buy one. Doesn't mean I wouldn't be happy or didn't want the other pair. Just means at that moment I like one better.

    And Hg is right, IF Nic really wanted to leave Portland because he didn't like it here he'd have signed the QO offer, played out next season and left as an UFA. Him not doing that tells me he'd be fine playing for Portland. Heck, he's said on MULTIPLE occasions he was 99 percent sure Portland would match any offer. He knows we want him here. It was just a matter of exploring opportuniites when giving the chance.

    by sarahhecht on 7/12/2012 10:45 AM
  8. HG by my calculations we will be around 4-5 under the cap assuming we gave 2 million to S. Williams and the rookies all signed for 120%. That of course also assumes that the 3 years 9 million for Freeland and the 3 years 4 million for Claver are accurate. Call it 4 million is space after matching Batum. That would leave us with enough money to sign someone like CJ Watson and bring back Joel Pryzbilla. Or we could offer 6.5 million to Scola if he is amnestied.

    by cmeese47 on 7/12/2012 11:06 AM
  9. @cmeese47; I thank you for that, which brings up a question; do you notice i always have questions? In playing summer league and playing in the training camp, If Barton is good enough to make the roster do we have to pay him extra, since he was a second round pick. I don't know exactly how that works, but as it looks right now he will be needed for depth. even if it a series of stints in our farm league.

    by Hg on 7/12/2012 11:35 AM
  10. @ Cory, yeah thx for the knowledge :) I TOTALLY 4got about CJ Watson! He would b a very good pick up for lead pg (I'm still brooding 'bout the Collison to Dal. thing though) to show Lillard the ropes; the only problem (& the reason I 4got about him ;) is he isn't a FA but that just means some kind o' trade (aka np, just a lil' less flexibility ;)

    by Simpson on 7/12/2012 12:07 PM
  11. HG all second round picks receive non guaranteed contracts unless their signing team chooses something different. From what I understand Barton signed a partially guaranteed deal worth around 4.5 million over 4 years thanks to yearly raises. I am not sure how much of that was guaranteed if any. If he makes the team then his salary for the season becomes guaranteed if we cut him after summer league and had no guarantees then he probably gets some prorated summer league pay and the chance to sign with another team. I do not see that happening though.

    by cmeese47 on 7/12/2012 1:30 PM
  12. @Simpson his contract was not guaranteed and Chicago decided not to use their team option on him after signing Teague and Hinrich. So Watson is now a free agent.

    by cmeese47 on 7/12/2012 1:32 PM
  13. I kind of feel like Nic didn't need to say anything. I was fine with him when it was just his agent talking, but when Nic is saying he'd rather play in Minny, I say let him go.

    That's more of just a tipping point though, it's too much to pay based on potential. I still remember Travis Outlaw's potential and Martell Webster's. Nic has played well enough to warrant an 8-9 million/year deal, but not this much. I'm afraid it's going to really hold us back from wheeling and dealing later on. It's too much for a guy who'll be a 3rd option on offense. It's too much for a guy who isn't aggressive consistently. I'm just not comfortable with that. I've seen too many teams limit their ability to win because of bad contracts. I don't want to be one of those teams. I think it's fine to overpay if you're a contender, but we're not...not yet, anyway.

    Having said that, I like Batum's game, and before his comments, he was one of my favorite Blazers. If we match, I hope he lives up to his potential, and proves me wrong.

    I really can't stand his agent.

    I do have some faith in Olshey, and his perspective, so I won't get too high or low, whatever we do. Although, I do feel like if we let him go, we should have done a sign and trade.

    by ChrisRozwod on 7/12/2012 3:02 PM
  14. I don't understand why 11.5 is too much to pay when that amount is over the cap space and if we don't use it we lose it anyway. And why does everybody get hyper about PA money. He will play just as well at 11.5 that he would at 9.5. He is still young and the only thing he said that was he didn't like standing in the corner to shoot the 3 and that he liked Minny, with BRoy, and all our coaches. He probably likes SAS also, but that doesn't stop him from liking us.

    by Hg on 7/12/2012 3:13 PM
  15. It gives us less ability to sign other player now, and in the future because it will take up a larger portion of our cap space. It's not that he's being paid that amount, it's what paying him that amount will do to the team.

    As a small market team, it's important that we remain as flexible financially as possible in order to attract more FAs now, and in the future.

    by ChrisRozwod on 7/12/2012 3:22 PM
  16. We lost our cap space already until we renounce him. We can go over the cap space for Batum only, and any time in the future we can trade him
    Players are assets just as cap space is assets but cap space can't win us any games while it is on paper only. Trade that for players you want and the asset is the same. Well of course unless the asset has a wreck. but I feel Batum is an Asset of 4 years and you have to protect your assets even if you have to pay more. Portland decided this route when they said let the street value set your contract and we will match. And to me that is what happened, but you are saying now that Portland should not own up to their words.
    I still don't understand

    by Hg on 7/12/2012 3:45 PM
  17. I think Olshey said something that I've reiterated before..he wants players here long term that want to be here. If Nic doesn't and we match, we can trade value for value before the deadline next then we'll know if it's a good fit with whatever coach and the team chemistry. Everything I've read is leaning towards Minnesota not having a sign and trade offer that justifies trading Nic..that could also be a poker move. I'm happy we resigned JJ and brought in Claver. The Claver signing makes me think Nic may be signed and traded. 72 hours to find out

    by riverman on 7/12/2012 5:05 PM
  18. I think before we match we should offer a sign and trade in an attempt to get 2 first rounders and a good Sf in return. I personally don't feel Batum is worth equal pay with L.A. a lot of people seem to think he (batum) is worth top dollar, I think he has a lot to prove, I think he has massive promise and potential but he has not consistently lived up to the praise of the Portland media who ( unintentionally ) I feel have either cost the team millions of dollars if we match or raised his trade value which is good for the team. I am hoping for the latter as I am sure many other fans are hoping as well. I think we should take advantage of Minnesota in their time of lovestruck weakness over Batum. Whether he or his agent said he does not want to be in Portland, it has been said to the press none the less and Batum has made no retraction to the press that I have seen printed. In the end I say sign him with the intent of trading him either now in a sign and trade or half way through the season at the trade deadline when his value will be at it's maximum.

    by mbmurr1 on 7/12/2012 5:47 PM
  19. Portland needs Batum and Olshey says that he will match and he has said that more than once and I will hold him to his word BUT if he let's Batum walk to a division Rival WE FANS NEED TO LET HIM KNOW.

    Teams have been trying to trade for Batum since his rookie year 4 years ago and if OLshey trades or let's him walk he can not be trusted because it does not make basketball since to trade him or let him walk.

    by lightskin350 on 7/12/2012 5:48 PM
  20. I'm hearing now that the report of an offer sheet being signed was bogus. Sounds like Minny has to dump Miller and Webster both in order to offer what we're hearing, and they're hesitant to do so, thinking that we'll just match whatever.

    I'm really getting on board with Olshey quick. If he can get us Batum for cheaper, or can get us a good trade, that would be amazing.

    If we sign Batum to too big a contract, it will be difficult to move him. He had a really attractive contract before because it was his rookie contract, and he was underpaid. When he's getting paid more than what he's producing, there will be far fewer suitors.

    by ChrisRozwod on 7/12/2012 7:52 PM
  21. Division rivals traditionally do not help each other out when it comes to trades.

    by riverman on 7/13/2012 8:35 AM
  22. Denver the previous season was an example...Dre for Felton? They obviously saw that coming

    by riverman on 7/13/2012 8:36 AM
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