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‘Amnesty Clause’ Gone Wild

November 3, 2011

The hot topic in the NBA right now is the triumphant return of the ‘amnesty clause’ which allows each team to waive one player and get his contract off the salary cap. This provision was a hit in the NBA almost a decade ago and will most likely be remixed when the new CBA is reached (hopefully this year). We at blogNBAsketball aren’t going to bore you by going down the entire list of teams and the likeliest casualties. You all can read the numbers, it doesn’t take a Shane Battier to figure out that guys like Baron Davis and Gilbert Arenas are as good as gone. What we’re doing here is discussing some players that you would never expect to get waived…Why? because if the owners had it their way, there would be a drastic change in the financial structure of the league. Drastic times call for drastic measures.

So get ready, these names are big…..


Phoenix Suns

-Steve Nash

This is as much for Steve’s good as it is for the Suns. Nash will never demand a trade out of Phoenix despite his intense desire to contend for a championship. If it was up to him he’d spend his twilight years mentoring point guard Aaron Brooks in the Valley of the Sun. This move would allow him to pursue that elusive ring he so desperately wants without having to turn his back on Suns fans. Phoenix traded for Brooks last season to be the heir-apparent at the point.  They realized that Goran Dragic wasn’t a floor general but, rather, a combo guard best suited for coming off the bench. Aaron, meanwhile, has experience leading a franchise. He was arguably the best player on the Houston Rockets during their playoff run in 2009. With Steve gone chasing a ring, AB would take the reigns of this young squad and once again flourish. In addition, Robert Sarver is one of the more vocal owners in trying to exact major change in a new labor deal. In waiving Nash, Sarver would get the instant payroll relief that he so desperately desires. I think everyone would benefit in this scenario (except Planet Orange).


Chicago Bulls

-Carlos Boozer

The Bulls front office won’t admit it, but they got caught up in the madness of The Insurrection last summer. They had a pile of money and a gap at the power forward spot. With Amare Stoudemire and Chris Bosh off the market, they settled on Bruise…I mean, ‘Booze’. They needed a durable, lost-post scorer and instead got a frail, perimeter shooter. I can’t remember seeing Derrick Rose run a single pick n’ pop play with him last season, which is Carlos’s specialty. His contract maxes out at $16 million in 2015, but his body will be finished way before that. No one will take this deal off Chicago’s hands so a trade is not realistic. Joe Johnson‘s monster deal is more likely to get moved than Boozer’s. The Bulls should just shed his salary and go at this free agent thing one more time, hopefully more prudently. The Windy City is a popular free agent destination these days thanks to the presence of Rose and the atmosphere created by Tom Thibodeau. In the meantime, Taj Gibson can hold down the fort. He showed in the playoffs that he is more than just a “role” player. Gar Forman, waive Carlos Boozer ASAP…..Bulls fans will thank you later.


Miami Heat

-Chris Bosh

I’m annoyed with all those people that tried to break-up the ‘Big Three’ in Miami last season…that being said, the Heat should use their ‘amnesty clause’ provision on Chris Bosh. Let me clarify, the people trying to break up the Heatles last year were haters. I’m not a hater, I really think that the Heat would be a much better team if it was Lebron James, Dwyane Wade, and a more evenly balanced supporting cast. Freeing up Bosh’s $ can do that instantly. If they try to trade him it’ll be tough to get the right pieces back. CB’s “max” contract is more than either James or Wade make on the court, so they’ll just be exchanging bloated salaries with another cash-strapped team. Plus, who’ll want to trade for Chris after the up n’ down season he had last year? Miami is a premier free agent destination (basketball not included). They could quickly grab some talented pieces that fit to replace the really talented one that doesn’t fit in Chris Bosh. I don’t blame Pat Riley for getting Bosh last summer. I am of the belief that he wasn’t all that enamored with him as a player…but he knew to get LBJ he needed both Wade and Bosh already in his pocket. A year later, this new clause allows him to amend that decision as James is already locked in. Anyways, I doubt Lebron would mind Bosh being moved. James sees what I see but he just won’t say it publicly. Chris Bosh’s identity as an NBA player is as a #1. If he’s not showcased he’s not productive. He gets lost in the shuffle playing alongside Lebron and Dwyane (maybe it’s a zodiac thang). ‘Riles’ should take advantage of the new CBA…even if owner Mickey Arison doesn’t.


So there you have it. These are some names you might not expect to see waived in the coming weeks but you have to admit, there’s some logic to them. The amnesty clause is intended to shed salary in order to get under the salary cap…but some of these teams should use it to free themselves of an awkward situations.

NBA General Managers, I’m available Mon-Fri right here on blogNBAsketball.



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7 Responses to ‘Amnesty Clause’ Gone Wild

  1. Ben R on November 13, 2011 at 4:32 pm

    lolwut. Are you serious? Phoenix would give up Nash for nothing when he still commands considerable value around the league and would jumpstart Phoenix’s rebuilding process? Chicago would give up Boozer when there is no free agent big on the market who can replace his production and they’ll have no cap space the moment Rose’s extension kicks in? And Miami would have the same problem, not to mention that your belief that Bosh couldn’t be traded for some nice pieces is absolutely silly.

    • KNEZ on November 13, 2011 at 5:52 pm

      Ben. I don’t predict any of these guys to be waived, nor is it likely. But this is all about money. No one knows what the new CBA will be. If the owners had it their way, there would be a hard cap system in effect immediately. That would force a team like Miami to have to cut payroll drastically. That’s why Mickey Arison was fined recently for comments showing his lack of solidarity. Robert Sarver in Phoenix has been pushing the hardest for a new NBA cap system like this one, he wants to take a machete to NBA payrolls more than anybody. As for Boozer, I think a guy like Kris Humphries or even a Carl Landry (both FA’s) could have done for the Bulls what Carlos did last year, and for much cheaper. Will these 3 guys get cut? No. But there is logic here when you consider the $ factor and what the new financial landscape could be in the league. This piece was intended to be thought provoking and outside the box. It is not a prediction.

    • Ben R on November 14, 2011 at 2:43 pm

      There’s a big gap between “outside the box” and “so terribly unrealistic it doesn’t even deserve mention.” You’re right that money is important, but all of these decisions border on the inane, especially since each team besides the Bulls has a much better amnesty candidate in Josh Childress and Mike Miller. Arison doesn’t care about footing the bill for a championship team, especially so since he’s worth $6 billion, and isn’t going to lose his third best player for nothing. If the Heat wanted to get rid of Bosh, they’d trade him for assets, not push back their championship aspirations by throwing him away. Same with the Suns and Nash, who would command an even more considerable bounty throughout the league and earn the Suns some really nice pieces on the trade market. That Childress makes more money over the life of his current deal ($27 million) than Nash will through next year ($11.7 million) makes your suggestion even more incomprehensible. Finally, as maligned as Boozer was last year, he was still much more productive than Humphries or Landry, and both are arguably worse defenders than he is, nor do they offer the same post presence that the Bulls desperately need on offense. The only comparable big on the market is David West and he lacks that aforementioned post game. It’s pretty damn hard to see whatever line of “logic” you think is behind any of this.

    • KNEZ on November 15, 2011 at 5:29 pm

      Ben, the title of this post was Amnesty Clause Gone Wild, not Amnesty Clause Gone Obvious…If you want a more conventional read checkout some of our other articles like James Harden Should Start or Mitch Kupchak Deserves Props. Of course Childress and Miller will be the likeliest guys to get cut here. What’s next? Shall I breakdown why Baron Davis doesn’t fit in Cleveland or why Rip Hamilton should get waived in Motown? Go to ESPN for that kind of scintillating conversation. As far as Mickey Arison, I am saying that he will be forced to trim salary. He assembled a “super” team w/ the old CBA rules, in a new labor deal he may have to strip salary big time and Miller would be just the beginning. His anti-’hardline owner’ tweets are still ringing in David Stern’s ears. The fact that you use Carlos Boozer’s defense as an arguing point makes me think that you don’t watch any Bulls games, or the Utah Jazz for that matter. He single-handedly boosted Bosh’s confidence in that playoff series, let alone made Pau Gasol unstoppable in the back-to-back Laker run. Unless he’s facing a short, stocky big Carlos’s D is atrocious. Landry and Humph have the same ability on that end. As for a post game…Boozer spent most of the playoffs floating on the perimeter. His fragility has turned him into a pick n’ pop guy at this stage of his career.

  2. KNEZ on November 17, 2011 at 9:17 am

    Ben, there is one other thing you’re forgetting. When you argue that a guy like Bosh could get the Heat valuable pieces back in trade you are forgetting that there will also be other teams’ amnesty cuts available, players that Miami can sign on the cheap. These guys may offer a discount in order to play for a contender and alongside 2 superstars. The pieces that would come back in a trade may not be bargains, they could be bad contracts themselves. With a hard salary cap that’s a risky proposition.

  3. Herman on December 11, 2011 at 6:04 pm

    I wonder of the Heat might actually be better without Bosh

  4. Izverg on July 16, 2013 at 11:29 pm

    nah cause he chose the easy way out to win a ring michael and kobe both jeniod bad teams and made it happen .. LA blamed kobe for everything that happened to their franchise still he stood strong sure he made mistakes but he’s human lebron will never be like kobe bryant

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