Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
NEW YORK — Greg Oden will become the first No. 1 overall pick since Kwame Brown not to receive a contract extension.
The Oregonian reported Friday that the Blazers and Oden’s representatives agreed there would be no extension, making the oft-injured center the first top pick since Brown not to get one at the end of his rookie contract. Teams have until Monday to reach deals with first-round picks from the 2007 draft.
“I don’t read it,” Portland coach Nate McMillan said before Saturday’s Blazers-Knicks game. “I don’t hear it. I don’t even think about it. We’re focused on basketball. [Blazers GM] Rich Cho will handle contract situations. Greg is focused just trying to get himself back on the court.”
Oden has played in only 82 games since he was picked ahead of Kevin Durant. He has been sidelined since fracturing his left patella last Dec. 5.
“Every day he seems to get better, both he and Joel [Pryzbilla, right knee],” McMillan said. “We haven’t put a time-frame on the return of Joel or Greg.”
Oden will be a restricted free agent next summer and the Blazers will be able to match any offers for him.
(The AP contributed)
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Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.