PORTLAND, Ore. – It was a rare but welcome sight at the Trail Blazers practice facility on Wednesday. Team owner Paul Allen stepped in front of the cameras for an interview – something he famously avoids.
KATU has previously requested to speak with Allen but we were surprised to find him at the pre-draft work-out willing to talk. We asked how he was dealing with the persistent rumors that he is looking to sell the team.
“I don’t know where that would come from,” Allen said. “I don’t understand it because of course I’m the person who knows and I know the answer and I’ve stated the answer multiple times. The team’s not for sale. So it’s mysterious and there are these mysterious figures lurking in the background whispering things but who are they? Only a few people know.”
Dwight Jaynes, who has cited anonymous sources saying Allen is considering selling, was there when Allen spoke.
“We’ll talk if you’d like to go talk about it,” Jaynes said after Allen addressed the rumors question. Allen responded simply by shaking his head no.
Allen had previously tweeted his response to the rumors, but this is the first time he’s gone on-camera and spoken to local reporters about his intentions.
It is absolutely false that I have entertained offers for @pdxtrailblazers. Unnamed sources are wrong as usual. Why don’t reporters check?— Paul Allen (@PaulGAllen) March 29, 2012
The Blazers owner also said he is very engaged in the upcoming NBA draft preps. The
“I think (picks) six and eleven, with the picks there we’re going to get really good players. But you never know what teams are going to offer you for those picks and then you have to evaluate what the contract of the players are going to look like down the road,” Allen said.
He said the team is in good position with lots of salary cap room to play with.
As for hiring a new head coach, Allen said he is looking for a person who can develop young players they will get in the draft.
“You really want to match the coach with the players you have,” he said.