Greg Oden's decision set for Friday

Updated: August 2, 2013, 10:59 AM ET
By Jeff Goodman and Marc Stein | ESPN.com

Former No. 1 overall pick Greg Oden plans to choose his new team Friday, according to sources close to the situation.

Sources told ESPN.com that Oden, after showing off his skills for several teams over the past few weeks, has not yet ruled out any of the six teams chasing him but is most likely to select his destination from the trio of Miami, San Antonio and Dallas.

New Orleans, Sacramento and Atlanta are the other known suitors for Oden. One source close to the process said Thursday night that the Pelicans are the only team from that group still "in the mix." 

Every team from the final six but Dallas sent a representative to Indianapolis last week to watch Oden work out, with multiple witnesses telling ESPN.com later that Oden has noticeably slimmed down and is moving well more than a year removed from his last microfracture knee surgery.

Sources said all six of the teams in the Oden chase then presented offers early this week that detailed not only financial specifics but also each club's medical plans for overseeing the 25-year-old Oden's ongoing recovery from a multitude of knee problems.

Oden hasn't played in an NBA game since Dec. 5, 2009, and underwent his third career microfracture surgery as recently as February 2012. He was selected No. 1 overall by Portland in 2007 but has played in just 82 career NBA games thanks to injury woes. In 21 games in the 2009-10 season, Oden averaged 11.1 points, 8.5 rebounds and 2.3 blocks per game before succumbing to injury again.

Sources said Cleveland, Boston and Memphis, in addition to the six finalists, all expressed interest in Oden, but those three teams declined to make a formal offer.

Miami long has been considered the favorite to land Oden by a number of rival teams because of the championship environment it offers and the fact that Heat president Pat Riley has been personally recruiting Oden since before the end of the 2012-13 regular season. Yet it remains to be seen whether Oden will opt to join a team farther away from the spotlight to lessen the pressure as he makes his return.

Marc Stein | email

Senior Writer, ESPN.com
• Senior NBA writer for ESPN.com
• Began covering the NBA in 1993-94
• Also covered soccer, tennis and the Olympics

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