The Portland Trail Blazers came into NBA Free Agency with an awful lot to lose, with multiple teams circling their star men.
LaMarcus Aldridge is the most obvious player to come to mind, with the four time All-Star being the most courted man in the entire National Basketball Association right now. The San Antonio Spurs are currently leading the race to sign the big man and Portland's hopes of keeping him diminish by the day.
But the Blazers have another key player who was a free agent, and they've lost him.
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According to a report from David Aldridge, an NBA reporter for TNT and NBA.com among others, the Trail Blazers have lost shooting guard Wes Matthews to the Dallas Mavericks on a four-year deal.
"Wes Matthews has agreed in principle with the Mavericks on a four-year deal, per source. Turned down huge offer from Sacramento," Aldridge wrote on Twitter earlier today.
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Matthews was apparently offered and turned down a four-year, $64-million offer from the Sacramento Kings to accept a deal with the Mavs, who apparently offered the 28-year old $52-million to move back to his home state of Texas.
Although the Mavericks were never willing to go that high, Matthews was understandably hesitant choose the instability of the Kings, where head coach George Karl is on some sort of power trip while owner Vivek Ranadive and his right hand man Vlade Davic look completely clueless in free agency.
Matthews spent the last five years of his career with the Portland Trail Blazers after going undrafted and signing with the Utah Jazz. Matthews averaged 15.4 points per game for the Trail Blazers and was a key defensive piece as they made the playoffs.
He has never shot worse than 38.2 percent from three-point range in any of his six professional seasons, ranks first in made three-pointers in Blazers history, and ranked fourth in the NBA in made threes at the time of his injury.
If Matthews can stay healthy, the Mavericks have an excellent player on their hands and his signing will go down as an absolute steal, when you take into account the fact that Toronto just parted with $60-million to sign DeMarre Carroll.