Haywood looks to be leading the amnesty clause charge.
NBA owners got themselves a life preserver in their newest collective bargaining agreement.
It's the amnesty clause and it's going to be in a lot of headlines between now and the end of the summer.
Now that teams have the right to get rid of one bad contract over the course of the 10 years this CBA will exist, those that need salary cap space should be chomping at the bit. It's kind of the like the "Get Out Of Jail Free" card in Monopoly.
Some candidates for the use of the clause are more obvious than others, but there are a decent amount of players who fit the bill.
Here's a look at some of them.
Boozer's underachieving may force the Bulls' hand.
Boozer—once a star and now approaching dead-weight status—signed a five-year $75 million contract in the summer of 2010.
He celebrated that deal by averaging 15 points and 8.5 rebounds in this, the second season of the contract.
In addition to those mediocre numbers, Boozer also only played about 30 minutes per night; mostly because he needs to be hidden on the defensive end, and his far lesser-paid backup—Taj Gibson—is a much better, more willing defender.
The Bulls are at a bit of a crossroads right now. Thanks to Derrick Rose's knee injury, they went from being a title contender to a first-round knockout in this year's playoffs.
Having Boozer's money to go after a potential impact free agent to hold down the fort while Rose is out—then pair with him when he returns—may be a solid decision.
If the Raptors want Nash, they may have to amnesty Calderon.
Calderon is set to be the Raptors' highest paid player in 2012-2013, at over $10.5 million.
No wonder ESPN's Chris Broussard reported on Thursday that Toronto is interested in using the clause on him.
The Raptors are said to be highly interested in signing Steve Nash, and Rotoworld.com points out that the overlap between Nash and Calderon at the point guard spot—along with Calderon's salary—makes him a prime candidate for amnesty.
Calderon had a fairly typical season by his standards, averaging 10.5 points and nine assists per game. But Nash—although a little long in the tooth—provides a lot more cache.
Nash may well be less inclined to sign with a team like Toronto as opposed to a title contender at this stage of his career. But if he's interested, don't be surprised to see the clause used on Calderon.
Haywood's time in Dallas may be up.
Brendan Haywood is averaging 5.2 points and 6.1 rebounds per game.
His salary includes $27.2 million owed over the next three seasons.
Looks like a no-brainer—Adios from Dallas to Brendan Haywood.
The Mavs are looking to use the clause, and according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, they are looking to sign free agent point guard Deron Williams as soon as free agency opens on Sunday.
Losing that mammoth contract with Haywood's name on it would certainly help them make a max offer.
Haywood likely wouldn't be out of work for long given the dearth of big men who can play in the NBA these days.
Dallas has bigger fish to fry, however—and that's D-Will.
Ron Ron's crazy may not be worth it for the Lakers anymore.
With apologies to the Artest formerly known as Ron, the Lakers have to let him go.
At $7 million this upcoming season—and with his performance declining while his crazy increases—Ron Ron may be axed sooner than later.
This season was the worst statistically of his career (7.7 points, 2.2 assists, 3.4 rebounds per game), he got himself suspended just in time for the Lakers to start the playoffs, and L.A. needs to get younger while reloading around Kobe Bryant and Andrew Bynum.
All of the pieces are in place. The Lakers just need to pull the trigger.
Brand's age, mileage and salary make him a prime candidate for amnesty.
The Sixers continue to stockpile young, long, wiry, super athletic forwards, as evidenced by their drafting of St. John's spindly Moe Harkless and Mississippi State's elastic-man-looking Arnett Moultrie on Thursday night.
This leaves Brand—who is a fossil compared to most of the rest of the roster—the odd man out.
The 33-year-old scored 11 points and pulled down seven rebounds this year. Oh, and he's owed $18 million next season.
He's got to go, Philly fans.
The Sixers are exploring trading team leader Andre Iguodala, and their best scorer from a year ago—Lou Williams—is a free agent.
Clearly, they are looking ahead, especially when you look at their crop of young talent—including Evan Turner, Jrue Holiday and Thaddeus Young.
Adding Moultrie and Harkless to this group makes Brand even more expendable. If the Sixers are to have a veteran big man on their roster to give these youngsters someone to look up to, they could do better—and likely cheaper—than Brand.