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2013 Amnesty Primer

As we move forward with “Amnesty 2.0,” we will see the fascinating possibilities that the provision brings even as the number of teams and players left dwindles with time. One fun component of the rule is that we know exactly which players are eligible for it and that number can only decrease over time since the players had to have been under contract with the same team before the new CBA. As such, any trades, extensions, or contract expirations thin out the list.

The other thing to remember is that most of the benefit of using the amnesty provision comes from additional flexibility in terms of the salary cap- the only money savings owners get from using it come from any reduction in luxury tax payments and whatever a “winning” team bids for that player on amnesty waivers.

Atlanta Hawks

Players Eligible for amnesty: Al Horford

Reasonable candidates for amnesty: None

Most likely amnesty decision: Not use it. Since the team traded all of its long-term contracts (except Horford) and potential candidates like Zaza Pachulia’s contracts expire this summer, the only person left for Atlanta to utilize the provision on is Horford. That seems unlikely.

Boston Celtics

Players Eligible for amnesty: Paul Pierce, Rajon Rondo, Avery Bradley

Reasonable candidates for amnesty: Paul Pierce

Most likely amnesty decision: Not use it. After signing five different players to dollar figures over $5 million for 2013-14 this past offseason, the Celtics took all the incentive out of using the amnesty provision on Pierce in 2013.

Brooklyn Nets- Used amnesty provision on Travis Outlaw (December 15, 2011)

Charlotte Bobcats

Players Eligible for amnesty: Tyrus Thomas

Reasonable candidates for amnesty: Tyrus Thomas

Most likely amnesty decision: Tyrus Thomas in 2014. As of now, the Bobcats do not have enough salary on the books to necessitate making an amnesty move this coming summer. As such, the most likely play is to keep Tyrus until the summer of 2014 when Ben Gordon’s contract is cleared from the ledger. As of now, Charlotte only has players on rookie deals and Brendan Haywood getting money then, so it could be the right time to strike.

Chicago Bulls

Players Eligible for amnesty: Carlos Boozer, Luol Deng, Joakim Noah

Reasonable candidates for amnesty: Carlos Boozer

Most likely amnesty decision: Carlos Boozer in 2014. The decision has become even clearer now, though the TaJ Gibson extension could push the timeline up a little bit if the Bulls are feeling the pressure financially next summer. However, Boozer’s last year comes the same year that Luol Deng becomes a free agent, so a proactive Bulls team could make some FA/trade noise since they have less money on the books.

Cleveland Cavaliers- Used amnesty provision on Baron Davis (December 14, 2011)

Dallas Mavericks- Used amnesty provision on Brendan Haywood (July 12, 2012)

Denver Nuggets- Used amnesty provision on Chris Andersen (July 17, 2012)

Detroit Pistons

Players Eligible for amnesty: Charlie Villanueva and Greg Monroe

Reasonable candidates for amnesty: Charlie Villanueva

Most likely amnesty decision: Charlie Villanueva in 2013. It seemed like a foregone conclusion in 2012 and absolutely has to be done in 2013. I cannot see a tangible benefit to leaving his $8.58 million on the cap for 2013-14.

Golden State Warriors- Used amnesty provision on Charlie Bell (December 11, 2011)

Houston Rockets- Used amnesty provision on Luis Scola (July 13, 2012)

Indiana Pacers- Used amnesty provision on James Posey (December 12, 2011)

Los Angeles Clippers- Used amnesty provision on Ryan Gomes (July 18, 2012)

Los Angeles Lakers

Players Eligible for amnesty: Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol, Metta World Peace, Steve Blake

Reasonable candidates for amnesty: Metta World Peace, Steve Blake

Most likely amnesty decision: Metta World Peace in 2013. Even though the Lakers continue to need a quality small forward in the worst way, shedding the final year of Metta’s onerous deal seems like the best play. The addition of Chris Duhon makes Steve Blake a slightly greater possibility, but he still appears moveable via trade and provides fair value to the team.

Memphis Grizzlies

Players Eligible for amnesty: Zach Randolph, Rudy Gay, Mike Conley

Reasonable candidates for amnesty: Zach Randolph (in 2014)

Most likely amnesty decision: Zach Randolph in 2014. Memphis will eventually need to make a decision on what to do with their core. Having Z-Bo, Gay, Conley, and Marc Gasol on the books through 2014-15 likely means that the team has a choice to make in 2014 unless either Randolph or Gay makes it for them by declining their player option. My gut says that new ownership will cut bait on an expensive $16.5 million final year option for Randolph.

Miami Heat

Players Eligible for amnesty: Chris Bosh, LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Mike Miller, Udonis Haslem, Joel Anthony

Reasonable candidates for amnesty: Joel Anthony, Udonis Haslem

Most likely amnesty decision: Joel Anthony in 2014. The reigning champs did not lose a single player from their amnesty list over the past year thanks to roster stability. Mike Miller’s health could end up making him the pick but Joel Anthony’s $3.8M final season stands out since the Heat do not have a veteran shooter locked up for 2014-15 at this time. Look for one of the two of them to be shed then, though.

Milwaukee Bucks

Players Eligible for amnesty: Drew Gooden and Larry Sanders

Reasonable candidates for amnesty: Drew Gooden

Most likely amnesty decision: Drew Gooden in 2013. With Beno Udrih expiring at the end of this season, Drew Gooden’s two remaining years are the only reasonable option left for amnesty purposes. Considering Brandon Jennings will get a major pay raise this summer and the Bucks will need any flexibility they can get whether or not Monta Ellis opts out, look for him to go even though the team stands unlikely to benefit in any way other than cap room.

Minnesota Timberwolves- Used amnesty provision on Darko Milicic (July 12, 2012)

New Orleans Hornets

Players Eligible for amnesty: No one

Reasonable candidates for amnesty: No one

Most likely amnesty decision: Not use it. By trading all three players eligible for the amnesty provision (Emeka Okafor, Trevor Ariza, and Jarrett Jack), the Hornets became the first team to be assured not to use it this time around.

New York Knicks- Used amnesty provision on Chauncey Billups (December 10, 2011)

Oklahoma City Thunder

Players Eligible for amnesty: Kevin Durant, Kendrick Perkins, Thabo Sefolosha, Nick Collison

Reasonable candidates for amnesty: None

Most likely amnesty decision:  Not use it. We will have to see how Sam Presti handles the Kendrick Perkins situation, but my read is that they will not utilize it after either of the next two seasons. Nick Collison would be a slight chance in 2014 if he were not so popular with the team and management.

Orlando Magic- Used amnesty provision on Gilbert Arenas (December 9, 2011)

Philadelphia 76ers- Used amnesty provision on Elton Brand (July 12, 2012)

Phoenix Suns- Used amnesty provision on Josh Childress (July 16, 2012)

Portland Trail Blazers- Used amnesty provision on Brandon Roy (December 15, 2011)

Sacramento Kings

Players Eligible for amnesty: John Salmons, Francisco Garcia, DeMarcus Cousins

Reasonable candidates for amnesty: John Salmons, Francisco Garcia

Most likely amnesty decision: John Salmons in 2013. Since Salmons’s deal is only partially guaranteed ($1M) in 2014-15, the Kings would have some flexibility in the 2013 off-season when Tyreke Evans can be extended and Cousins will be one year away if they cut him loose at that point. Interestingly, that low buyout could also make Garcia the choice if management sees the talent disparity between the two as high enough to warrant the switch.

San Antonio Spurs

Players Eligible for amnesty: Tony Parker and Matt Bonner

Reasonable candidates for amnesty: Matt Bonner

Most likely amnesty decision: Not use it. Bonner’s partially guaranteed 2013-14 salary would be a possibility but appears unlikely at best.

Toronto Raptors

Players Eligible for amnesty: Andrea Bargnani, Amir Johnson, Linas Kleiza, Ed Davis

Reasonable candidates for amnesty: Andrea Bargnani, Amir Johnson

Most likely amnesty decision: Not use it. Utilizing amnesty on Bargnani would be too big an admission of defeat for management, though theoretically a change at the top coupled with more bad play could change the equation sufficiently to put Il Mago on the amnesty line.

Utah Jazz

Players Eligible for amnesty:  Derrick Favors

Reasonable candidates for amnesty: None

Most likely amnesty decision: Not use it. With only young buck Derrick Favors left as eligible to be amnestied, every conceivable sign points to the Jazz joining the Hornets in August 2013 as teams guaranteed not to use the provision.

Washington Wizards- Used amnesty provision on Andray Blatche (July 17, 2012)

 

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