Blazers G Fernandez to stay in Spain

VITORIA, SPAIN (TICKER) —Spanish star Rudy Fernandez has no plans to suit up for the Portland Trail Blazers any time soon.

Fernandez became the first man in history to win two Spanish Copa del Rey Most Valuable Player awards this weekend after leading DKV Joventut to glory in Vitoria.

But while the 22-year-old’s star continues to rise in his homeland, Fernandez is adamant he remains committed to DKV and is not contemplating following the likes of countrymen Pau Gasol, Jorge Garbajosa and Juan Carlos Navarro to the United States, where his draft rights are held by Portland.

“Right now I have a contract with DKV Joventut and I’m only thinking about that,” Fernandez said on the Spanish league’s web site.

The Mallorca-born shooting guard was selected in the first round of the 2007 NBA draft by the Phoenix Suns before having his draft rights traded to the Trail Blazers.

Fernandez chose to stay with DKV and signed a new contract with the Catalan outfit last July through the 2010-11 season.

“There are always rumors about if I will be in the NBA,” he said. “Now I wear this jersey, I have won the Copa del Rey and I have two more seasons remaining.

“Right now, I’m only thinking about this contract that I have.”

Fernandez, who also won the MVP crown for DKV as an 18-year-old in an unsuccessful 2004 Copa del Rey campaign in Seville, was simply unstoppable in Sunday’s final against tournament hosts Tau Ceramica as DKV posted a thrilling 82-80 victory.

Fernandez poured in 32 points - more than twice as many as any of his teammates - as DKV bounced back from a three-point halftime deficit.

“It has been a very competitive final,” Fernandez said. “In the first half, Tau have had the edge playing a very physical game. In the second half, we have improved in defense, we have pressed and run, and we have managed to become the team that we were in the first two games (in the Copa del Rey). I think we have all fought and thanks to this we have been able to win.”


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Updated Monday, Feb 11, 2008