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Enes Kanter to Reportedly Sign Max Offer Sheet with Trail Blazers

Russ Isabella/USA TODAY Sports

Restricted free agent Enes Kanter hasn’t been able to reach an agreement on a new deal with the Oklahoma City Thunder, so Kanter will sign an offer sheet with the Portland Trail Blazers:

On the surface, this doesn’t really make all that much sense, even with all that cap room. The Blazers have four young big men in Meyers Leonard, Mason Plumlee, Noah Vonleh and Ed Davis, so adding another one to the mix would be a bit odd, even if Kanter is a far better scorer than any of those players.

Portland could be doing this to force the Thunder’s hand. Oklahoma City has said it’ll match any offer for Kanter, but it’s going to be a max offer sheet the Thunder may not prefer to pay:

And making it even better:

Oklahoma City may match anyway so as not to lose an asset, but that may lead to some other cost-cutting moves:

What would be interesting is if the Thunder declined to match. Kanter is a valuable scorer and rebounder, but he’s one of the worst frontcourt defenders in the league and may very well not be worth that big contract. That would leave the Blazers in a weird situation with big money going to Kanter plus all those other youngsters already in the frontcourt.

Ultimately, with Kevin Durant‘s free agency upcoming, Oklahoma City probably will match. If that happens, the Thunder will hope that Serge Ibaka can help cover for Kanter’s many sins on the defensive end.

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