The Denver Nuggets have acquired center Mason Plumlee, a 2018 second round draft pick and cash consideration from Portland in exchange for center Jusuf Nurkić and a 2017 protected first round pick via Memphis, General Manager and Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations Tim Connelly announced today.
The Portland Trail Blazers have acquired center Jusuf Nurkic and the rights to Memphis’ 2017 first round draft pick from the Denver Nuggets in exchange for Mason Plumlee, a 2018 second round pick and cash considerations, it was announced today by president of basketball operations Neil Olshey. “We are pleased to add a young center with Jusuf’s talent and potential to our roster and excited by the prospect of three first round picks in the 2017 NBA Draft,” said Olshey. “We also want to thank Mason for his many contributions to the organization these past two seasons. His presence will be missed and we wish him all the best for the future.”
As for Plumlee's replacement, the Blazers players said Sunday they don't know much about their new teammate beyond what they've seen in games against Denver over the years. Nurkic, at 7-feet, 280-pounds, brings size, defensive potential and a different offensive dimension to Portland.
“I went in early to the facility to start cancelling my checkbook, my credit cards,’’ Plumlee said. “And someone said, ‘Neil wants to meet with you.’’’ When Plumlee arrived at the office of Neil Olshey, the Blazers’ president of basketball operations, coach Terry Stotts was also in the office. “They told me I wasn’t going to practice today,’’ Plumlee said. Plumlee, the Blazers’ starting center who was having a career season, had been traded to Denver for 22-year-old center Jusuf Nurkic and a 2017 first round pick.
Jamal Murray: Sad to see you go @Jusuf Nurkic my plane pal, and a good friend and teammate! Goodluck on your new team✊🏽
Jusuf Nurkic: Thanks to the opportunities you have given me in the Denver Nuggets. Former teammates, fans and the club I wish all the best. Now its time for new challenges! #RipCity instagram.com/p/BQbJFNlFWKu/
Jason Quick: Just talked to Mason Plumlee. His trade to Denver was only the start of a weird day. Story to come.
Jeff Goodman: Denver trades Jusuf Nurkic and 1st-rounder to Portland for Mason Plumlee, 2nd-rounder and cash, source told ESPN. First by @Adrian Wojnarowski.
The Denver Nuggets are sending center Jusuf Nurkic and a first-round draft pick to the Portland Trail Blazers for center Mason Plumlee, a second round pick and cash, sources told ESPN.com The trade gives the Blazers potentially three first-round picks in this year's draft. The pick going from Denver to Portland is Memphis' 2017 pick, which is only top five protected.
Darren Wolfson: FWIW: told #Twolves never talked to Denver about Nurkic. @Brian Windhorst 1st to note weeks ago that Thibs/Layden open to adding another big. - RT: HoopsHype: Nuggets, Blazers swap centers. http://bit.ly/2lDuxmr
Adrian Wojnarowski: Denver is trading center Jusuf Nurkic to Portland, league sources tell the @TheVertical.
Adrian Wojnarowski: Portland sends Mason Plumlee a 2018 second round pick for Nurkic and a 2017 first-rounder (via Memphis), league sources tell @The Vertical
Adrian Wojnarowski: Portland gets size/strength, spares paying Plumlee extension this summer; Denver gets a good passing center to play with Jokic.
Adrian Wojnarowski: Sources on @TheVertical: Portland sends Denver center Mason Plumlee and '18 2nd-round pick for Jusuf Nurkic and '17 first-rounder (via Griz)
Steve Kyler: Nothing new. The Carmelo stuff dominating the pipeline. Was told Nurkic and Nuggets working together to find him ideal new home. twitter.com/scomars/status…
Sources say that the Nuggets, having acknowledged that Nikola Jokic and Nurkic didn't click as a pairing, are actively working to find Nurkic a new home that would give him the chance he deserves to be a front-line center.
.@stevekylerNBA heard any buzz about what type of deal nuggets want for Nurkic? Love for blazers to be in the running for him. Steve Kyler: I really have not heard much on Denver. They are believed to be sellers, but have no idea what they want.
The Nuggets, for the record, are now openly shopping third-year big man Jusuf Nurkic in addition to the widely assumed availability of vets Danilo Gallinari, Kenneth Faried and Wilson Chandler.
Nuggets coach Mike Malone has essentially come to the conclusion that he can play either Nurkic or Nikola Jokic, but not both. The team is much better offensively with Jokic on the floor, and the fact that Nurkic has not always carried an exemplary attitude makes him a pretty good candidate for a deal.
May 6, 2021 | 7:06 am EDT Update
One day after ESPN reported coach Nate Bjorkgren faces an uncertain future with Indiana, the new coach blamed himself for any communication problems with players and those in the organization. “You know I don’t make excuses for things,” he told reporters before the game. “I’m a young coach. I’m learning, I’m growing and I’m trying to be better. This is on me. I’m the head coach and fingers should be pointed at me. I love coaching this team and the relationships with these coaches and players, I’ve just got to keep getting better.”
J. Michael Falgoust: This is what led up to the Greg Foster blow up with Bitadze. He let Harkless get to the rim for a 2nd chance dunk and got scolded for not contesting. Bitadze responds w/ a 3 and when he runs back you can read his lips pretty clearly. “Sit the f$&@ down.” That did it #PacersKings pic.twitter.com/oFEmdUpPUl
Scott Agness: Bjorkgren arrived. He says they’re “in a frustrating stretch. Competitive juices are flowing.” He has talked individually with Goga Bitadze and assistant Greg Foster about their confrontation.
According to several NBA officials, among the coaches who are on shaky ground are Sacramento’s Luke Walton, Washington’s Scott Brooks, Houston’s Stephen Silas, Orlando’s Steve Clifford and Indiana’s Nate Bjorkgren
Some of those NBA officials are now wondering whether Budenholzer’s time in Milwaukee is about to expire – especially if the Bucks don’t make a deep playoff run. “Bud knows the situation he’s in,’’ an NBA executive, who knows Budenholzer, said. “There’s a lot of pressure on him, no doubt. He didn’t do so good in the playoffs the last two seasons even with maybe the best player in the league (Giannis). “Now, that they got Holiday. They gave up a fortune for him. So, he’s feeling the heat. I think they have to get to the Finals for him to keep his job.’’ Another NBA official echoes those comments, saying, “He’s on the hot seat. He has to win big in the playoffs. This is a tough business; it’s a bottom-line business.’’
A league source also suggested Budenholzer’s future in Milwaukee could hinge on another factor. “I’ve heard things about his relationship with the Greek Freak,’’ the official said. “I’ve heard it’s not the best. I heard Giannis accepts things from him and respects him because he’s the head coach.
Harrison Wind: Nikola Jokic on Michael Malone: “The guy gave me everything. The guy gave me the freedom. He lead me. He showed me the way. And we built a great relationship…it’s more than basketball. It’s six years of building something together.”