Darren Wolfson of 1500ESPN.com in Minnesota recently interviewed Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor, who said that his team and the Portland Trail Blazers are nearing a resolution over a dispute dating back to a 2010 Draft day trade involving Martell Webster.
The Wolves and Portland Trail Blazers have attorneys working diligently on the Martell Webster compensation claim case. Taylor said they'll have closure sometime in December. The Wolves are hoping for financial and/or draft pick reimbursement after they contend that that they got Webster (back injury) as damaged goods in June 2010.
On Friday morning, a Blazers spokesperson refused to confirm the details or timeline mentioned in the report or provide any comment. (Not even on how hard the team's lawyers work.)
The Blazers sent Webster to the Timberwolves in exchange for Ryan Gomes and the pick used to select Luke Babbitt. Webster appeared in just 46 games during the 2010-11 season, the first following the trade, after undergoing back surgery in October 2010. He then appeared in just 47 games during the 2011-12 season after undergoing another back surgery in September 2011.
There is a recent compensation precedent in a somewhat similar situation. Back in June, Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports reported that the Oklahoma City Thunder had to turn over a 2013 second-round pick (originally belonging to the Charlotte Bobcats) to the Boston Celtics after the NBA ruled the Thunder's medical staff did not properly inform the team's management about the condition of forward Jeff Green's heart. Green was traded by the Thunder to the Celtics at the 2011 trade deadline but then sat out the entire 2011-12 season after undergoing heart surgery.
Webster, 25, signed with the Washington Wizards after being released by the Timberwolves this summer.
Portland took Webster, a Seattle-area native, with the No. 6 pick in the 2005 NBA Draft.
-- Ben Golliver | email@example.com | Twitter