Blazers’ Fernandez seeks return to Europe

Portland Trail Blazers guard Rudy Fernandez(notes) wants to return to Europe and no longer has interest in being traded to another NBA team, his agent said Wednesday.

Fernandez has been unhappy with his limited role with the Blazers and had his agent Andy Miller request a trade from the franchise three months ago. Miller said about 15 teams have expressed interest in the Spanish guard, most notably the Boston Celtics and Chicago Bulls, but talks have slowed because the Blazers have asked for too much in return.

Now, Miller said Fernandez is “homesick” and no longer has any interest in playing in the NBA.

“He has indicated he would like to return to Europe to continue his basketball career,” Miller told Yahoo! Sports on Wednesday. “He is more comfortable in Europe. He’d rather be in Europe than the NBA. He understands the circumstances in which he wouldn’t be coming back. I don’t see any scenario in which he’d want to be back.”

Fernandez can’t play in Europe until his contract ends or the Blazers free him from it. He is scheduled to make $1.2 million this season and the Blazers have a $2.2 million option for the 2011-12 season.

Miller said Fernandez is seeking an “amicable divorce” from the Blazers, but he also told The Oregonian – which first reported the story – that Fernandez is prepared to sit out the season and face a possible suspension.

Blazers general manager Rich Cho told Yahoo! Sports that at this time he has no plans of releasing Fernandez from his contract.

“I’ve spoken to Rudy’s agent and I’m aware of his feelings,” Cho said. “At the end of the day we’ll make the best decision for the organization.”

When asked if there’s any trade scenario Fernandez would consider, Miller said: “I honestly don’t believe so – no, I certainly don’t think so.”

After starring in Spain, Fernandez took a pay cut to play in the NBA when he arrived two seasons ago. He averaged 10.4 points in 25.6 minutes per game as a rookie and quickly became a fan favorite. Fernandez played in only 62 games last season because of back problems that required surgery. He averaged 8.1 points.

Miller said Fernandez initially wanted a trade because the presence of All-Star guard Brandon Roy(notes) and a roster full of swingmen limited his role.


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Updated Wednesday, Aug 18, 2010