Raja Bell Turns Down Buyout Offer From Jazz

March 1 2013 at 8:51pm CST By Chuck Myron

8:51pm: Though no team made a commitment, several NBA clubs have spoken with Rudoy recently about signing Bell if he were to be waived by the Jazz, Charania reports.

8:43pm: The buyout offer was for the minimum, Oram notes. I believe that means it would have been for the equivalent of the minimum salary, which for a 12-year veteran like Bell would be a prorated portion of $1,352,181. Jazz senior vice president Kevin O'Connor told a team-owned radio station this week that the club offered Bell the minimum buyout before the season, but never heard back from him.

7:20pm: Raja Bell is declining a buyout offer from the Jazz, reports Bill Oram of The Salt Lake Tribune (Twitter link). Agent Herb Rudoy told Shams Charania of RealGM.com that it "does not look like" Bell and the Jazz will get a buyout done by tonight's 11pm Central deadline (Twitter link). Previous reports had indicated Bell wouldn't accept the buyout unless he could line up a deal with another team, and Oram and TNT's David Aldridge both tweet that he has no outstanding offer from another club. Rudoy tells Jody Genessey of the Deseret News that he'll hold out until the deadline comes, but believes his client will remain with the Jazz (Twitter link).

Players who aren't waived by tonight's deadline are ineligible to play for another team in the postseason, but Bell would still like to shake free from Utah and elsewhere this season, even if it means missing the playoffs, Rudoy tells Charania (Twitter link). Rudoy insists his client is in "fabulous shape" despite not playing all season after the Jazz asked him to stay away from training camp, Charania tweets. Bell clashed with coach Tyrone Corbin last season, leading to the shooting guard's estrangement from the club.

Bell had recently been telling people close to him that he would join the Lakers, HoopsWorld's Alex Kennedy reported, but Marc Stein of ESPN.com indicated L.A. wasn't necessarily his most likely destination, given the team's luxury tax situation. Still, the rest of the regular season means as much to the Lakers as anyone as they look to climb into a playoff spot, and they may be inclined to have Bell around for the stretch run, if not the playoffs, though that's just my speculation. The Jazz are one of the team's competing with the Lakers for a postseason berth, so they may be unwilling to part ways with anyone who could help the purple and gold, as senior VP Kevin O'Connor indicated this week.

Bell is making $3.48MM in the final year of his deal. It's unclear how much the buyout offer from the Jazz is worth.

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