As more details become available as to what’s included in the NBA’s new labor deal, one of the more interesting additions to the CBA is the so-called “amnesty clause,” where every team can waive one player and remove their salary from counting against the cap. While the player still gets paid, jettisoning a player in this fashion would help franchises create cap space or simply save on potential luxury tax expenditures. While the early names to surface have been Gilbert Arenas (3 years, $62.4 million), Rashard Lewis (2 years, $46 million) and Baron Davis (2 years, $28.8 million) owing to their onerous remaining contracts, one name that may have you surprised is that of three-time All-Star Brandon Roy.
Sure, the 27-year-old has been slowed by knee issues, but don’t forget that he was a member of the All-NBA Second Team in 2009 and the All-NBA Third Team in 2010. And after his legendary Game 4 performance in this year’s playoffs despite just playing 47 games last season, there are plenty of teams – Chicago, Minnesota, Golden State – that would still be interested in signing him.
According to ESPN.com’s Marc Stein via Twitter last night, Blazers coaches have been told waiving Roy is a “strong possibility.” This coming from an organization that still doesn’t have a GM in place. But with $68.3 million headed his way over the next four seasons, you can understand why Portland is going to take some time to think about this.
“Paul Allen, the Blazers’ billionaire owner, can surely afford the bill, but waiving Roy will not create cap room,” writes Howard Beck of The New York Times, who calls Roy perhaps the amnesty clause’s “most enticing candidate.” And because the amnesty rule doesn’t expire, it might make sense for the Blazers to take a wait-and-see approach with Roy before they cut him loose – especially with Greg Oden‘s future not yet determined.