With rumors swirling, Portland Trail Blazers owner Jody Allen has released what seems like a definitive statement on the franchise’s immediate future: It’s not for sale. At least not right now, and not anytime soon.
“As chair of both the Portland Trail Blazers and the Seattle Seahawks, my long-term focus is building championship teams that our communities are proud of,” Allen wrote in a statement released Tuesday. “Like my brother Paul, I trust and expect our leaders and coaches to build winning teams that deliver results on and off the court and field.
“As we’ve stated before, neither of the teams is for sale and there are no sales discussions happening.”
Statement from Jody Allen pic.twitter.com/oAezfb398o— Portland Trail Blazers (@trailblazers) July 5, 2022
The future of Portland’s NBA team has felt uncertain since the death of its previous owner, Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, four years ago.
In early June, several news outlets reported that Nike co-founder Phil Knight was leading a consortium that had made an offer to buy the Blazers for $2 billion. NBA president Adam Silver had said in June that Jody Allen would have to sell the team — at some point.
In her Tuesday statement, Allen said that point could be decades in the future.
“Estates of this size and complexity can take 10 to 20 years to wind down. There is no pre-ordained timeline by which the teams must be sold,” she wrote. “Until then, my focus – and that of our teams – is on winning.”
Since the NBA’s free agent period began last week, the Blazers have signed restricted free agent Anfernee Simons to a four-year extension, re-upped center Jusuf Nurkic with a four-year deal, and brought back center Drew Eubanks on a one-year contract.
None of those deals are believed to be enough to vastly improve the Trail Blazers; they finished 27-55 and in 13th place in the Western Conference this season.
According to several news outlets, the Blazers have also signed former Golden State Warriors guard Gary Payton II to a three-year deal.