Thunder GM Sam Presti said shortly before receiving official notice of Portland’s max offer sheet to Enes Kanter that he intended to match any offer for him and had planned in advance for the sort of offer sheet to which the Trail Blazers signed the big man, as Presti told The Oklahoman’s Anthony Slater. Presti added that Kanter, during a meeting with the Thunder on Tuesday, had expressed a desire to remain in Oklahoma City. The Thunder have until Sunday to follow through and exercise their right to pull their prize trade deadline acquisition back to OKC. Here’s more from around the Northwest Division:
- Other teams simply weren’t interested in doing sign-and-trades for LaMarcus Aldridge and Wesley Matthews, according to Blazers GM Neil Olshey, as Mike Tokito of The Oregonian relays (on Twitter). Aldridge and Matthews have officially signed outright with the Spurs and Mavericks, respectively.
- Olshey also said that an extension for Meyers Leonard was a subject of discussion but made it clear that he wants the former lottery pick around for the long term, Tokito tweets. It’s unclear if the Blazers are having internal conversations about an extension or have begun talks with Leonard’s reps at the Creative Artists Agency. The sides have until October 31st to sign a rookie scale extension or Leonard will be set for restricted free agency next summer.
- The Blazers renounced their Non-Bird rights to Alonzo Gee, among other players who’ve since signed elsewhere or have already retired, notes Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders (Twitter link).
- The Jazz have arranged to pay the maximum $625K toward the buyout of draft-and-stash prospect Tibor Pleiss from his contract with Barcelona of Spain, as José Ignacio Huguet of Mundo Deportivo reports (translation via Rick Saldaña; hat tip to Aaron Falk of The Salt Lake Tribune). Pleiss traveled to Utah and engaged in contract talks with the Jazz, though his trip ended before a deal could be struck, notes Jody Genessy of the Deseret News (Twitter link). Still, Pleiss and the Jazz maintain mutual interest, according to Genessy (on Twitter).