Blazers terminate Arvydas Sabonis' contract after trade talks go nowhere

Updated: August 15, 2003, 5:43 PM ET

PORTLAND, Ore. -- The Portland Trail Blazers have terminated Arvydas Sabonis' contract, after the 7-foot-3 center said earlier this week that he intended to retire.

The Blazers had hoped to trade Sabonis by Friday, when his contract was no longer guaranteed. Sabonis was set to make $7 million in the coming season, which would have given teams willing to trade for him some salary cap relief after his retirement.

When trade talks didn't advance, the Blazers decided Thursday to terminate the contract.

"We had a myriad of conversations with teams about his contract, but none were going anywhere," Blazers general manager John Nash said.

One rumored trade had New Jersey's Kenyon Martin and Dikembe Mutombo coming to Portland in exchange for Rasheed Wallace and the rights to Sabonis. But neither side would comment on trade rumors.

Sabonis, 38, told his agent earlier this week that he likely would not return to the NBA because he wanted to spend more time with his family.

Sabonis joined the Trail Blazers in 1995 and has averaged 12 points and 7.3 rebounds in 470 games. He is seventh on the team's career list for rebounds with 3,436.

His decision leaves the Trail Blazers with one proven center, Dale Davis, and one prospect, Ruben Boumtje Boumtje, who has played sparingly in 35 games over two seasons.

This story is from's automated news wire. Wire index