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Nic Batum’s agent hopes the Blazers won’t do something they are totally going to do. He should learn to live with disappointment.

Jul 8, 2012, 2:30 PM EDT

Nicolas Batum, Greg Stiemsma AP

CSN Northwest spoke with Nicolas Batum‘s agent, who is living in  fairytale world and is desperate to get around reality. Funny thing. Reality just kind of is.

Batum has agreed to terms with the Timberwolves on a large 4-year, $45 million offer sheet. He is restricted, so the Blazers are going to match. Considering the fact that they’ve turned down trade offers for everything short of a gold kitchen sink and a GM’s first-born son should be no surprise to anyone. But nooooo…

From Batum’s agent to CSNNW.com:

“His mind is not there in Portland. Out of that meeting with the Blazers on Thursday, we hoped they would allow him to live his dream. The best case scenario is a sign-and-trade and we understand that. Hopefully, Paul Allen would never stand in the way of his dream to play for the Timberwolves,” is what Nicolas Batums agent, Bouna Ndiaye, told CSNNW.com Saturday evening.

“Hes a player that likes to move around and thats what he likes about Minnesota. Requesting a sign-and-trade was part of it, but not all of it. He went there to tell them theres no hard feelings, I dont hate you, but my heart isnt there. Thats what he told them.”

via Agent: Batums heart isnt in Portland.

That’s nice.

Never going to happen, but that’s nice.

Portland GM Neil Olshey told Batum and his agent, as has been reported a million times, that they’re going to match.

This “his heart is in (insert city)” stuff has to stop. It’s out of control. Your heart is wherever you are. You know how I know that? If it wasn’t, your brain would get no circulation and you would die. Restricted free agency is a pain. No one is denying that. But it’s the reality. And these stories about hopes and dreams are silly in the face of what will happen.

In a few years, Batum can head to Minnesota, or Houston, or back to France or Istanbul. But next year, he’ll be a Blazer. They know his value and have his rights because he didn’t sign the qualifying offer.

Them’s the breaks.

  1. football58 - Jul 8, 2012 at 2:38 PM

    What am I missing here? If the player i.e Batum or Eric Gordon don’t want to stay with their current team, then sign the qualifying offer and be an UFA next year. Why can’t they wait that extra year and go to where their heart supposedly desires.

    • londonaiooo - Jul 8, 2012 at 2:57 PM

      Because if you get injured, or you don’t play well, then at the end of your contract you could find yourself getting paid a lot less, or even not at all. A player is going to take the guaranteed money ten times out of ten, there’s no way they’d risk losing out on $45m, or the max that Gordon is being offered, too much risk. Playing where you want is secondary to getting paid for the younger guys, wait until you’ve made your money before you choose location over money (a la Ray Allen).

      • football58 - Jul 8, 2012 at 4:36 PM

        I get the whole guaranteed money thing, but when you say ten times out of ten the players are going to except the guaranteed money, what do you have to say about Chris Paul turning down 60 mil, expecting to get a hundred mil by waiting until next year. Dwight Howard another example is foregoing guaranteed money by the Magic so he can try and play for the team of his choice, which remains to be seen if that can happen. If the players are so worried about guaranteed money then they can be insured for their risk against injury.

      • lookitsgreen - Jul 8, 2012 at 6:31 PM

        football58, At this stage of Paul’s contract, they can only offer him so many years (dont recall exactly how many for $60m) but if he plays out his contract he’ll become a free agent next year. With the new CBA teams can re-sign their players using their Bird-rights to a year more than the proposed contract he declined, worth more per year for a year longer. Therefore he gets more dollar per year and a year more.

  2. trickybastard - Jul 8, 2012 at 2:39 PM

    Blazer’s should let Minnesota overpay. 4yrs/45M for Batum is ridiculous

    • letangusespertplus - Jul 8, 2012 at 2:47 PM

      sounds pretty decent to me.

      • lookitsgreen - Jul 8, 2012 at 6:34 PM

        OVERPAID! So many free agents are overpaid this year and this is the cherry on the icing…

  3. mamsy2000 - Jul 8, 2012 at 3:17 PM

    These players and their demands are what is ruining the NBA. This is the profession they chose and are fortunate enough to be living out their dream simply by playing in the NBA.

    • londonaiooo - Jul 8, 2012 at 3:58 PM

      The right to choose where you work is fundamental. Just because it’s a lot of money and it’s the NBA doesn’t change that, or make him more selfish for wanting to exercise that right. And it’s not like the money is different in either Minnesota or Portland, it’s the same contract.

      • mytthor - Jul 8, 2012 at 4:08 PM

        The right to choose where you work is fundamental? Man, if only the 10% of the country that is unemployed knew that, they’d have a job!

        Batum doesn’t have to do anything he doesn’t want to do. But if he wants to make 45 million dollars, he has to do what the people who pay him 45 million dollars want him to do. That’s the same way it works if you make 8 bucks an hour.

      • 1historian - Jul 9, 2012 at 6:52 AM

        The right to choose where you work is indeed fundamental but the fact is that in pro sports you DON’T have that right when you are first drafted.

    • mytthor - Jul 8, 2012 at 4:10 PM

      How do you define “ruining the NBA?” Is it the huge ratings, young superstars, and international appeal that show it’s ruined? Or are you referring to how you personally feel about the nba? Because I gotta tell you, I could care less about that, and I assume just about everyone else also gives zero shits about it.

  4. minnesotablizzard - Jul 8, 2012 at 3:30 PM

    I find it to be a really good sign of things to come that players are actually interested in wanting to come to Minnesota again

  5. jamesinva - Jul 8, 2012 at 3:52 PM

    “stand in the way of his dream to play for the Timberwolves” Hey no disrespect to Minnesota but…i never thought i would ever hear something like that before…twolves have a great young nucleus but come on, lets be real…DREAM to play in Minnesota? sorry but..no. Agent just trying to get more $…

  6. awolfgang - Jul 8, 2012 at 4:28 PM

    The really great part to this story is the fact Minnesota doesn’t have the cap room (yet) to make good on both the Batum AND Brandon Roy offers. So either they will have to do some trading or change one of the offers.

    Sounds like Minnesota and Batum’s agent are working real hard to scare Portland into a sign and trade. But Neal Olshey has called their bluff.

    http://www.blazersedge.com/2012/7/7/3143780/minny-cant-offer-what-they-are-offering#comments

    • Justin - Jul 8, 2012 at 7:58 PM

      Yes they do. They have $10 mil they can shed just by declining to pick up Brad Miller and Martell Webster’s contract options which they extended the due date on.

  7. thomaskouns - Jul 8, 2012 at 5:59 PM

    I got one name as to why all these players want to go to Minnesota – Ricky Rubio.

  8. reptar24 - Jul 8, 2012 at 6:12 PM

    I’m a die hard wolves fan, and life long Minnesota resident, and I never thought I’d ever hear an athlete say it’s their “dream” to play for the Timberwolves. Sign him up!

    • jamesinva - Jul 8, 2012 at 10:57 PM

      I said the same thing but i get tons of thumbs down because im not a twolves fan. funny

  9. brianbosworthisstonecold - Jul 8, 2012 at 6:46 PM

    Batums wet dream included Rubio.

  10. jordanismyidol - Jul 8, 2012 at 7:18 PM

    Who would not wanna play with rubio and the love machine ?

  11. blazenhawks - Jul 8, 2012 at 7:34 PM

    Haha this is so dumb just shut up and play you are getting paid to live your dream already if you don’t like it I’ll switch you.

  12. plymouth11 - Jul 8, 2012 at 9:15 PM

    Just for the sake of asking the question, if a player were an RFA and was in Batum’s situation, could they just sign an offer sheet with any team and play out remaining contract and then leave? Could Batum refuse to play in Portland, sit out and force a move, or just become an UFA after a year? IMO This stuff almost only happens in the NBA because its such a top heavy league.

    • Kurt Helin - Jul 15, 2012 at 9:29 PM

      Batum could sign a small qualifying offer with the Blazers, make $4.3 million and be an unrestricted free agent next year. But that comes with risks — get injured, have a bad year and your market dries up. This is his first big kick at the can and he’ll take it.

  13. icewinna0 - Jul 8, 2012 at 9:25 PM

    Is really that big of a deal Portland or Minnesota. Minnesota has a more promising future with Love and Rubio but they would be lucky to make the playoffs. Just stay one more year and play with Aldridge and possibly Hibbert and then be an unrestricted free agent. But if wants to go to MIN sooooo bad tha
    Just sign and trade him, I wouldn’t want that on my team if I were Portland.

  14. zjmbo - Jul 8, 2012 at 9:30 PM

    Nicholas is an overpaid crybaby, just like most of the other free agents …or all NBA players. This is why I refuse to pay for tickets to watch a game or buy their jerseys any more. These rediculous contracts cost the fans, not the owners money. These free agents need to honor the contract they sign, whether they like it or not. They have two choices, work through the contract and then explore your options, or retire and not play at all …. its that simple. You make too much as it is, how much do you really need. You all say how much you appreciate the fans, but what you really mean is that you appreciate how much these fans will pay to watch you show off. Get off your high horses and Truly Think of the Fans.

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