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If the NBA adopts an amnesty clause, which Pistons contract would the team choose to get out of?

Some of you may remember ‘The Allan Houston Rule‘ a few years back (Larry Coon’s explanation of it here), which essentially allowed teams to waive a player without having to pay any luxury tax on that contract. Zack Lowe of SI.com points out that in the new collective bargaining agreement, a broader amnesty rule is being discussed in conjunction with a hard salary cap that would put virtually every team well over that cap number. Basically, the amnesty rule would make up for the fact that most teams invested in long-term deals under the old agreement, and those deals would become even more burdensome under a new, more strict cap.

Lowe then lists some players for each team who would be candidates to be waived under this hypothetical amnesty provision. Here’s what he said about Detroit:

Wow, could this team use some salary-cap amnesty. It’s tempting to slash Ben Gordon’s deal, which is worth $37.2 million over the next three seasons, but Gordon is probably in that “Joe Johnson sweet spot” where it’s too early to dump him if doing so means paying him in full amount anyway. The same may be true of Charlie Villanueva.

That would leave the aging Richard Hamilton, owed $21.5 million in guaranteed money over the next two seasons.

I think Lowe’s reasons are essentially right. Getting out of Gordon’s expensive deal would certainly be tempting, but I have little doubt, based on what went on during the season and the fact that the team already made efforts to move him, Hamilton would be the guy, although I’d toss in Jason Maxiell as a darkhorse candidate. His contract isn’t as bad as the others, but he’s expensive, unproductive and Dumars might still have faith that the other three can contribute or that he can get some value for them in a trade.

7 Comments

  • May 17, 20115:52 pm
    by Brady

    Reply

    See, the thing about this rule is that you still have to pay the guy, so I can’t see Charlie or BG getting the cut because they are owed money for longer than Rip. Max is a good darkhorse though, there’s no way he’s getting traded unless it’s in a trade for an equally bad/unproductive player…which is also unlikely.

  • May 17, 20115:58 pm
    by Shane

    Reply

    Trade Hamilton or BG for draft picks next year to teams that aren’t doing so well in the NBA and are likely to be lottery teams.. The draft class should be ridiculously strong especially with Harrison Barnes etc returning.

  • May 17, 20115:58 pm
    by Shane

    Reply

    Trade Hamilton or BG for draft picks next year to teams that aren’t doing so well in the NBA and are likely to be lottery teams.. The draft class should be ridiculously strong especially with Harrison Barnes etc returning.

  • May 17, 20116:14 pm
    by Quick Darshan

    Reply

    I think you have to go with Rip.  I don’t mind Villanueva as a backup if the Pistons get a shotblocker/rebounder through the draft/free agency.

    And, as bad as BG has been, he pairs better with Stuckey (if you’re keeping him) than Rip.

    Maxiell isn’t a bad idea either.

  • May 17, 20117:20 pm
    by kent

    Reply

    1.  ben gordon2.  rip hamilton3.  charlie villanueva4.  maxiell

  • May 17, 20117:30 pm
    by rob

    Reply

    Easy. Gordon.

    If we do Gordon, we get cap space to add a big piece this year, and a valuable trade asset to add another big piece the year after when Rip’s contract becomes expiring.

    Plus, Gordon is set to make $13 mil in 2014. Cant win paying that much to a bench player.

    If we did Rips, we would get the same amount to spend this year, but then wouldnt get anymore significant cap relief until 2014.

    We can also still explore trades for Rip like the CLE deal. No need to use the amnesty on Rip.

  • May 18, 20111:53 am
    by Laser

    Reply

    when you’re THIS bad, at some point you just gotta bite the bullet and make some decisions that figure to yield short-term losses for long-term gains. not talking about throwing games here, but waving a small white flag and making personnel decisions to better position the team for future success.
     
    three years ago, it would have been to flip one of the expiring contracts for talent, when it became obvious the free agent class didn’t have any winners, or to save the cap space for a rainy day. at any time since, it would have been to just go young already.
     
    as long as you’re focused on winning the greatest number of games THIS season, you’ll never be a .500 team. if you want to win now and win later, at some point you have to be a winner. and the pistons have been consistently executing the perfect formula to stink forever.
     
    joe would pick rip for certain. gordon is almost inarguably the right choice to move. so rip fits a bit worse, you’ve seen enough or gordon to know he’s a dud in this system. even with rip out of the rotation, gordon was a total dog. forget his age. forget that he’s a slightly better complement to stuckey, even though rip’s passing ability helps cover for stuckey’s flaws. neither one of these guys is the answer. cut the one who’s on the books longer and for more money. easy call.

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