First and foremost, most of you might be wondering what in the world is that word/drawing before the words “Darko Milicic” on the title. Well, that’s a Serbian word meaning bye-bye (according to translate.google.com). In just under a month, the Timberwolves have been able to get rid 2 of their 3 2nd overall picks. Michael Beasley, who was drafted 2nd overall in the 2008 NBA Draft is probably heading to Phoenix right now. The Timberwolves had no plans at all this off-season to resign Beasley nonetheless.
Today, the Timberwolves plan to use their amnesty on center Darko Milicic who was drafted by the Detroit Pistons as the 2nd overall in the 2003 NBA Draft. The Wolves’ other 2nd overall pick, who was originally drafted by Minnesota themselves, Derrick Williams, has also been part of multiple trade rumors regarding the Timberwolves acquiring Nicolas Batum in a sign and trade or trading Williams as part of a package for Pau Gasol. As of now, it looks like Derrick Williams is staying in Minnesota.
The reason why the Timberwolves plan to use amnesty on their big man is because they want to give an offer sheet to Portland Trail Blazers restricted free agent, Nicolas Batum. Darko still has 2 years and $10 million remaining on his contract, however, only $7 million is guaranteed. Last season Darko averaged 4.6 points and 3.3 rebounds per game.
Yesterday, the Timberwolves were in discussion to trade for Batum as they offered two first round picks as the Wolves would acquire Kyle Korver from the Bulls in exchange for a second-round pick according to an NBA source. However, the two teams were not able to agree on a trade. According to reports, the offer sheet sent by the Timberwolves to Nicolas Batum is a four year $45 million offer which includes bonuses that could push the deal past $50 million.
Neil Olshey, the Blazers’ GM, has firmly stated that the team would match any offers for Batum. Lately, he has been reported to have agreed with the Timberwolves’ plan.
Batum as of late has repeatedly stated that he wants to play in Minnesota and that his heart is with the Timberwolves and the state of Minnesota. The young forward is hoping that the Blazers would either execute a sign-and-trade or would simply not match the offer of Minnesota.
Last season, Batum averaged 13.9 points and 4.9 rebounds per game. The addition of Batum will certainly help fill up the wingman/small forward problem the Timberwolves are facing as of now.