Nobody knows when the NBA Lockout will be lifted and nobody knows what the final outcome will be. However, one of the things being discussed very heavily is the amnesty clause – also known as the Allan Houston rule.
The amnesty clause would allow teams to waive a player without paying any further luxury tax on the player’s contract, regardless of how long or how rich the contract is. The team will still pay the player’s contract, but can avoid the luxury tax threshold.
The Denver Nuggets would gladly use their amnesty clause to help rid themselves of Al Harrington’s contract, which is due $27.6 million over the next four years (final two seasons are only partially guaranteed). Harrington was wildly inconsistent last season and obviously didn’t fit in after Carmelo Anthony was traded. There also isn’t a certain spot for him on the Nuggets team-first mentality.
Other players that may be victims of the amnesty clause are:
- Atlanta - Marvin Williams or Joe Johnson. If the Hawks are concerned about money they would use the clause on Johnson, but more than likely Williams would be the victim. He is due to make $23.2 million over the next three years and let the team down in the playoffs last season. Not to mention he hasn’t lived up to being the No. 2 pick.
- Boston - Rasheed Wallace. Wallace has already retired so if the Celtics can write off his salary it would help keep them out of luxury tax trouble.
- Charlotte – DeSagana Diop. Diop is due to make over $14 million during the next two years. Not bad for somebody that has only played in 43 games over the last two years.
- Chicago – The Bulls are going to be one of the few teams that really doesn’t need to take advantage of the clause. If anybody, Chicago could use the exception on Carlos Boozer.
- Cleveland – Baron Davis is not part of the Cavaliers future plans and he is more than likely not want to stay in Cleveland help them rebuild. He is due $28.9 over the next two years.
- Dallas – Brendan Haywood has $45 million contract and will make $10.5 million when he is 36. This is a backup center people that has averaged more than 10 points only once in his career.
- Detroit – Lot of people say the Pistons would use this exception on Ben Gordon, but Richard Hamilton seems more likely. Sure his contract is only two seasons, but he has made it apparent that he doesn’t want to stay in Detroit. If released he would gladly go play for the Bulls.
- Golden State – Again lots of people believe the Warriors will use the clause on Andris Biedrins. However, Golden State has made it clear that they aren’t just going to give Biedrins away. So it makes Charlie Bell a more likely candidate.
- Houston – The Rockets really don’t need to use the clause on anybody.
- Indiana – James Posey is at the end of his career and the Pacers would gladly use the clause on his one year contract for $6.9 million.
- Los Angeles Clippers – Chris Kaman or Moe Williams. Kaman is due to make $12 million next season, while Williams has two years left for $17 million.
- Los Angeles Lakers – Ron Artest. Luke Walton and Steve Blake are options too, but Artest makes more money and is older.
- Memphis – The Grizzlies really don’t have anybody they need to use the clause on.
- Miami – Mike Miller seems like the most likely candidate. He was injured and the Heat are going to try their best to keep the Big Three together.
- Milwaukee – Drew Gooden was given a contract similar to Harrington last season but was even more disappointing after nursing an injury for most of the years.
- Minnesota- Brad Miller. The Timberwolves have made some crazy trades, but trading Johnny Flynn and their 20th pick for Miller and a second round pick was by far one of the most bizarre.
- New Jersey – Travis Outlaw was a major disappointment for the Nets after receiving a 5-year/35 million deal. He is better served as a backup small forward than starting for the Nets.
- New Orleans – Emeka Okafor may not be a casualty, but if the Hornets are in desperate need of money they may need to let Okafor and his three-year/$43 million contract walk.
- New York – Renaldo Balkman hasn’t lived up to the insane contract the Nuggets gave him years ago. Okay a $3.5 million/2 years isn’t that bad, but Balkman hasn’t proven he deserves it.
- Oklahoma City – Nobody. Thunder aren’t in financial difficulty – yet.
- Orlando – Gilbert Arenas. This is a no-brainer. Arenas is one of the highest paid basketball players and the Magic need a lot of financial flexibility.
- Philadelphia – Andres Nocioni – The Sixers could get themselves out from under Elton Brand’s contract, but he was a big reason why Philadelphia went to the playoffs. Nocioni barely played for the Sixers last season and he is due $14 million for 2 years.
- Phoenix – Josh Childress. Childress is another player overpaid last offseason. He is due to make $27 million over 4 years and barely played more than 16 minutes.
- Portland – Brandon Roy. Two seasons ago and Roy was arguably the best shooting guard in the NBA. However, two knee surgeries later and Roy is a likely casualty of the amnesty clause. The Trailblazers tried to talk him into retiring, but he declined. He would be a huge hit in free agency, even with his injuries.
- Sacramento – Francisco Garcia. Garcia is one of the most overpaid players on the Kings roster.
- San Antonio – Richard Jefferson. Jefferson disappeared on the Spurs in the playoffs, which means San Antonio should let the small forward walk.
- Toronto -none. Jose Manuel Calderon could be an amnesty clause, but he is still a useful point guard.
- Utah – Mehmet Okur. Okur missed 69 games last season and it is obvious that the Jazz are going younger with Derrick Favors and Enes Kanter.
- Washington – Rashard Lewis. Lewis will be the second highest player in the NBA next season (behind Kobe Bryant) and definitely isn’t the second best player in the NBA.
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