Tonight’s 11:00pm Central deadline for rookie scale extensions is fast closing in. Here’s the latest on talks around the league, with any additional updates that come in throughout the evening added to the top:
- Final-hour talks are taking place between the Cavs and representatives for Tristan Thompson, reports Jason Lloyd of the Akron Beacon Journal (Twitter link). The team has offered more than $40MM, according to Sam Amico of Fox Sports Ohio (on Twitter). A deal was a 50-50 proposition as of this afternoon, as Amico heard (Twitter link).
- Butler struck a somewhat different tone before the Bulls‘ game against the Cavs tonight than his agent did when he indicated that talks were through (below), as Sam Smith of Bulls.com relays. “We still want a deal,” Butler said. “I still want to be here. I still want to have nothing to worry about. So we have until 11:59 [Eastern time] to figure it out. I’m not a personal guy. I don’t take everything to heart. I understand it’s a business. I just have to be a great basketball player. I think this team is really good, championship caliber. I am a part of this team; I am going to produce. I’m going to guard. I will take care of myself. I think there’s not too much I can do right now. I’m done talking about it.”
- Still, Bulls GM Gar Forman said that both sides had agreed to end discussions for now and pick back up again in restricted free agency next summer, Smith notes.
- Butler also said that he believes he’ll remain with the Bulls whether it entails signing an extension or a new deal next summer, tweets K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune.
- Butler has rejected the Bulls‘ “final offer” and plans to enter restricted free agency next summer, Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports reports. Butler’s agent, Happy Walters, said, “All the [rookie extension] deals done so far have shown that teams are building around their stars of the future, and they’re compensating those players as such. I was under the impression Jimmy was also viewed as one of those future building blocks with the Bulls. We tried like heck to get something done, but ultimately, the Bulls wanted a ‘hometown’ discount. While understandable, I doubt their GM or coaches give Mr. Reinsdorf a discount when negotiating their own deals.”
- Butler had told his teammates that he was willing to play out the season unless the team upped their “final” offer, K.C. Johnson tweets.
- The Wolves and Rubio are making progress on a four-year extension, Wojnarowski reports (Twitter link). According to Wojnarowski’s sources, there’s optimism, but no deal in place yet.
- The Wolves are now willing to go higher than $52MM in four-year offers to Ricky Rubio and the team is on board with a deal as long as Rubio is, reports Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN Twin Cities (Twitter link). Jerry Zgoda of the Star Tribune believes that a deal would have to be for at least $55MM over four seasons (Twitter link).
- The Bucks and Brandon Knight weren’t too far apart in extension talks before ending them today, tweets Jeff Goodman of ESPN.com.
- Conversely, the gap appears wide between the Bulls and Jimmy Butler, and the chances of a compromise don’t appear to be high, as Goodman also hears (Twitter link). Chicago has been willing to consider a player option in his deal, something the franchise doesn’t ordinarily do, according to K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune (on Twitter), but talks aren’t progressing, as Brian Windhorst of ESPN.com hears (Twitter link).