Jamal Crawford Expected To Decline Option

Jamal Crawford was the subject of a ton of trade rumors prior to March's deadline, but both the Blazers and teams interested in Crawford were unsure about whether the veteran scorer planned to exercise his $5.23MM player option for 2012/13. Teams wanting to clear cap room were hoping Crawford would decline the option, while teams not wanting to acquire Crawford as a two-month rental were hoping he'd pick it up.

The Trail Blazers ultimately ended up hanging on to Crawford, and Alex Kennedy of HoopsWorld reports that the 32-year-old is expected to turn down his option for next season. While Crawford didn't confirm that report, he did talk to Kennedy about the upcoming offseason:

"If I opt out, I think it'll be really cool to have a traditional free agency," Crawford said. "Last year, everything was so rushed. A lot of people didn't even think we’d have a season and then, all of sudden, everything was thrown together. It happened so fast. If I choose to opt out, this year will be much different and more traditional."

The Timberwolves were one team that seemed on the verge of acquiring Crawford at the trade deadline, and the former Michigan Wolverine didn't rule out the possibility of joining the T-Wolves this summer.

"Anything is possible in the future," Crawford said. "Minnesota was a team that I almost signed with before I decided to come to Portland. I’m sure the interest is still there. I’ve always been a fan of coach [Rick] Adelman and how he goes about things. That’s a little ways away though. We’ll see what happens this summer. Right now, I’m just focused on Portland and trying to get as many wins as possible before the season is over."

The Blazers may be hoping Crawford turns down the option, since they're expected to have a ton of cap space to work with this summer, and taking Crawford off their books would clear an extra $5MM+.

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