In his post-game interview, Nurkic said he wasn’t sure where his basketball future would take him, referring to the fact that he had a non-guaranteed contract for next season. When pressed, he also indicated that he wasn’t entirely sure if he wanted to return.
“I don’t know what I need to do, I’ve got a non-guaranteed contract, I don’t know if I’m even going to be back, right.”
“I’m going to leave that to Rich Paul, my agent, we’ll see what happens.”
“As far as right now, I’m just going to get away from basketball and see what my next step should be, we’ll see what’s going to happen, I’m not sure if I’m coming back or what the team direction is, we’ll look at that later.”
“At the beginning of the year I wish my role was bigger, I think I could help even more but, like I said, I was respectful and tried to do what they asked of me.”
“I don’t know what the future stands for me or for the team and this team.”
When asked if he wanted to be back with the team next season, his response suggested issues within the team.
“In the right situation, yes ... we’ll see, I don’t know yet because this is not it.”
Nurkic played 33 minutes in the decisive Game 6, attempting 7 shots and hitting 5 for 13 points with 7 rebounds, 2 assists, and 5 turnovers.
Next season, the fourth and final year of Nurkic’s current contract is worth $12 million, but only $4 million is guaranteed.
Nurkic was traded to Portland from Denver prior to the 2017 NBA trade deadline. In his time with the Blazers, he has averaged 14.5 points, 9.6 rebounds, 2.8 assists, 1.4 blocks and 1 steal.