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Enes Kanter To Sign With Portland Trail Blazers

Enes Kanter To Sign With Portland Trail Blazers

The Blazers have reportedly agreed to a deal with center Enes Kanter. He was being pursued by a bevy of teams, including the Los Angeles Lakers.

The 26-year-old Turkish big man became available after being waived by the New York Knicks at the National Basketball Association trading deadline last Thursday.

Kanter will play significant minutes at center behind Jusuf Nurkic as Portland builds its roster for the postseason.

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The Knicks acquired Kanter in September of 2017 as part of the trade that sent Carmelo Anthony to the Oklahoma City Thunder.

The Blazers are 33-23, tied with the Houston Rockets for fourth in the Western Conference entering Wednesday's games. Portland signed Kanter to a $70M offer sheet in 2015, which OKC matched. With many veterans hitting the open market following the trade deadline, we knew that Neil Olshey would presumably target one of these newly bought out players to help the team in the playoffs, but rumors were slim.

Kanter's role with the Knicks had decreased in the weeks leading up to the deadline, which led him to express displeasure over his limited role. In 44 games this season he is averaging 14 points and 10.5 rebounds per game, but he fell out of the rotation as Knicks head coach David Fizdale shifted his focus to younger bigs like Luke Kornet and Mitchell Robinson. After playing two seasons with the Thunder, Kanter was traded along with Doug McDermott to NY in exchange for Carmelo Anthony.