But not before trying to keep Portis in Chicago long-term.
K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune:
Definitely surprised Bulls traded Portis. But don't agree with talk of "no loyalty." They offered him a multi-year extension worth $40-50M last Fall. He said no, which is certainly Portis' right. Also, word around league is Portis is looking for $16M annually this summer in RFA.
— K.C. Johnson (@KCJHoop) February 7, 2019
There’s plenty of variability within those reported teams. How many years? What accounts for the difference between the $40 million and $50 million. Fully guaranteed? Options?
But it was probably the max-allowable four years. Most extensions like that are fully guaranteed for at least the first three seasons.
Even if it were just $40 million over four years with only three years fully guaranteed, I would have advised Portis to take the offer. That’s life-changing money for someone who has earned only $6,855,506 in his first four seasons. Restricted free agency is too risky to pass on an offer like that.
Portis’ production has slipped slightly this season. He’s still a fine player, but I doubt he gets $10 million annually in free agency, let alone the $16 million he’s reportedly seeking.
Getting traded hurts Portis. Washington doesn’t have nearly the same attachment to him as Chicago, which drafted him.
Portis’ qualifying offer next summer (assuming the Wizards extend it) will be $3,611,813. That number could be quite relevant.
Meanwhile, Portis is tweeting:
I respect Portis’ determination. Getting traded could push him to be even better.
But he has a way to go to get the money he wants.