I tend to think that Quick’s take about the situation is correct: The T-Wolves have not made that offer and will not make that offer. They and the agent are simply trying to force the Blazers to act irrationally in the situation. Fortunately, Olshey is playing it all the way that he should. He is not being aggressive in response, he is not being passive, he is just assertively stating that the Blazers will match any offer and will not be involved in a sign and trade.
I could see the situation going down like this: Minnesota never makes an offer and Nic is unable to get any offer close to the reported 45-50 million from anyone else. The Blazers then come in with a low-ball offer that offends Batum and sends the agent into a tizzy-fit. The agent then threatens to sign for one year and let Batum become an UFA. This goes on well into the summer and toward training camp at which point the Blazers come back with a FIVE year offer in the neighborhood of 45-50 million. Yes, at age 23 locking Batum up for a fifth year at around 10 million at age 27 ½ would be a good move for the Blazers. It would also be a nice gesture to Batum that would help to ease the hard feelings even if it is at less money per year then what he wants.
The whole thing that I find interesting about this whole Batum situation is that this contract negotiation should be a no- brainer. Batum is a 23 year old whose stats project upwardly for the next four to five years. You will be getting Batum at or near his prime for a good chunk of the contract. It’s the next contract that you would have to negotiate with him at age 27 or 28 where his numbers will peak and then gradually drop where you will have to overpay because now he put up the numbers to demand a big contract yet his production will be on the decline.
I give Olshey and the Blazers big props for the way they are handling the whole thing. They know they hold all the cards and aren’t blinking one bit with the T-Wolves and the agent’s desperate actions