The storyline of the Blazers’ off-season has been the ever developing saga surrounding guard Rudy Fernandez. There have been twists, turns, rumors, hearsay and all sorts of drama generally reserved for 10 PM on MTV. Today, we may be reaching the end point. The you-kn0w-what has officially hit the fan, with multiple reports stating that Rudy Fernandez is 100 percent done with the Portland Trail Blazers. Some even go as far as to say Fernandez wants no part of playing in the NBA anymore. Let’s give credit where credit is due, first to The Oregonian’s Jason Quick who broke the story:
“Rudy Fernandez will not report to the Trail Blazers training camp in October and the disgruntled guard has no intention of playing for the Blazers for the remaining two years of his contract, his agent said Wednesday.
Miller said Fernandez has become so frustrated with NBA politics that he no longer wants to play in the league.
“In Rudy’s mind, this is long over,” Miller said. “Promises have been made, sacrifices have been made, and it didn’t work out.”
Quick also had this quote from Blazers GM Rich Cho:
Cho said he has made offers, counteroffers and talked about package deals with teams, but has yet to find a scenario that makes sense for the Blazers.
“I’m not going to be pressured into making a deal,” Cho said. “I’m not going to make a trade just to make a trade. It has to be the right deal for the team.”
There is no turning back now. One could assume that this could possibly be some sort of bluff from Miller and co., but that’s an interesting strategy to say the least. Cho re-inforced what I believed was the Blazers strategy from the start: they weren’t going to make a deal just to make a deal, they were either going to keep him or get something in return. As we’ve chronicled all summer, the market for Rudy has diminished as teams once interested searched elsewhere for perimeter players. The only saving grace for Blazer fans was that it seemed as if the relationship between Portland and Fernandez had not reached toxic levels yet and could be worked out. If today is any indication, the toxicity level is through the roof.
Jorge Sierra of HoopsHype had this to add from an interview with Fernandez’ agent Andy Miller:
“I don’t think (the relationship) is reparable.”
Well if the situation is toxic, then Portland should just trade him right? As quoted above from Quick’s story, Fernandez may not want any part of the NBA period. Yahoo! Sports Marc J. Spears also had a story on the Fernandez goings on and added this:
“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.”
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.”
At this point, it seems as if Rudy and his camp feel as if they have tried everything in their power to make this work and are now looking to blow this thing up. There is no happy ending at the end of this tunnel. There is no if, only a when, and more interestingly the how of the end of the Blazers and Rudy Fernandez. We’ll have more as this situation has time to digest and more news comes out.