The Sacramento Kings also offered Matthews a contract for four years at $16 million annually, reports ESPN’s Marc Stein. The Kings, who also pursued Monta Ellis before he reportedly signed with the Indiana Pacers traded Nik Stauskas, Jason Thompson and Carl Landry to the Philadelphia 76ers in a move aimed at clearing salary cap space.
Matthews, who will turn 29 in October, has played six NBA seasons—one with the Utah Jazz and the last five with the Portland Trail Blazers. He suffered a season-ending ruptured left Achilles tendon against the Mavericks on March 5, but is reportedly ahead of schedule in his rehab.
Portland reportedly did not offer Matthews a new contract, according to Jason Quick of The Oregonian.
In 60 games with the Blazers last season, Matthews averaged 15.9 points and 3.7 rebounds over 33.7 minutes. He is a career 44.3% shooter from the floor and 39.3% from three-point range.
The Blazers are undergoing a roster overhaul this off-season, having traded forward Nicolas Batum to the Charlotte Hornets last month and likely to lose forward LaMarcus Aldridge and center Robin Lopez in free agency.
SI.com’s Ben Golliver wrote the following on Matthews in his pre-free agency player rankings, which ranked No. 21 among available free agents.
If. If. If. If Wesley Matthews hadn’t torn his Achilles tendon in March, he would be 5 to 10 spots higher on this lis as an in-his-prime 3-and-D wing with playoff experience and an impeccable locker-room leader. If Matthews hadn’t torn his Achilles, perhaps Portland doesn’t bomb out in the first round against Memphis. If Matthews hadn’t torn his Achilles, perhaps the Blazers are better positioned to keep together a strong starting unit that was broken apart by the trade of Nicolas Batum and could see further defections depending on the free-agency decisions of All-Star forward LaMarcus Aldridge and center Robin Lopez.
- Mike Fiammetta