Barton through the legs alley-oop to Robinson
FRESNO – Will Barton, the ever-improving Portland Trail Blazers guard, earned himself a bit of security recently.
The third year of his rookie contract became fully guaranteed on July 25 since the team elected not to waive him by that date, we’re told. This decision comes as no surprise. Barton will earn a little over $900,000 for the upcoming 2014-15 NBA season.
“It just shows that there’s more work to be done,” Barton told CSNNW.com. “I’m thankful for the opportunity the [Trail] Blazers have given me and now I’m just looking forward to training camp and getting better with my teammates.”
Portland will be able to extend Barton a qualifying offer of $1.1 million at the conclusion of next season that will make him a restricted free agent. The Trail Blazers will be capable of retaining him by matching any offers competitors throw his way.
Barton, 23, the 40th overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft, has shown tremendous progress in the last five months. His progression, along with his flamboyant playmaking ability has slowly gained the trust of head coach Terry Stotts and teammates.
The 6-6 combo guard makes plays off the court, as well, with the self-proclaimed moniker of being “The People’s Champ.” He effortlessly became a fan-favorite in Portland.
In five Summer League games last week, Barton averaged 14.4 points, 6.4 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 1.2 steals. He expected to enter training camp as a strong rotation player.