Festus Ezeli is probably going to be a Portland Trailblazer, but he isn’t one quite yet. “I bought a one-way ticket,” the former Golden State Warriors center told CSN Northwest shortly after arriving at PDX. “We are going to figure it out.”
Despite a lack of an official report about a contract between the Blazers and the top free agent big man remaining on the board, Reddit users have dug around enough to speculate that the deal is already done. In a potentially telling photo originally tweeted by team owner Paul Allen, a man in the same shirt Ezeli was wearing at the airport — who is probably Ezeli but whose face is obscured — can be seen sitting at the same table as Evan Turner as he signs his Blazers contract.
This is quite Kevin Durant-level palace intrigue, but it’s always fun to track the movement of free agency through tea leaves lying outside of team releases.
Ezeli is a player of dubious value; after sprouting into a great paint-protector and finisher at the rim through the Warriors’ in the early going of 2015-16, he returned from injury time looking effete and confused in the playoffs, and was one of their weaker links as they fell to the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Finals. It will be interesting to see what the Blazers offer him.