Nicolas Batum and the Timberwolves have agreed to terms on a four-year, $45MM offer sheet with bonuses that could push the total value of the deal to $50MM, reports Jon Krawczynski of the Associated Press (via Twitter). Once the offer sheet is signed, Portland will have three days to decide whether it wants to retain Batum or allow the forward to leave and join the Timberwolves.
As we heard earlier today, the Trail Blazers have indicated they will match any offer extended to Batum, so the odds he ends up in Minnesota look slim. Batum reportedly would prefer to play for the T-Wolves, as the opportunity to be on the same team as Ricky Rubio excites the Frenchman, and Minnesota has tried to make that happen. According to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports (via Twitter), the team pitched a sign-and-trade involving Derrick Williams and Martell Webster to the Blazers, but Portland wasn't interested.
Negotiations between the Trail Blazers and Batum's agent Bouna Ndiaye have been tense throughout the year. The two sides didn't see eye to eye in January when attempting to negotiate an extension for Batum, and Ndiaye asked the Blazers last week not to talk to his client while he explored the free agent market. While a report surfaced earlier this week suggesting Batum "never wants to play in Portland again," the 23-year-old quickly took to Twitter to deny it.
Luke Adams contributed to this post.