The Denver Nuggets have decided to fly away from Chris “Birdman” Andersen.
Benjamin Hochman of the Denver Post is reporting that the team has used its amnesty clause to waive the 10-year veteran, according to a source.
Coinciding with the move was the signing of power forward Anthony Randolph, according to Hochman. The 23-year-old averaged 7.4 points and 3.6 rebounds last year for the Minnesota Timberwolves and has played with the New York Knicks and Golden State Warriors as well in his five-year NBA career.
He joins a Nuggets team that is still looking to re-sign free-agent center JaVale McGee to a long-term extension. This recent move suggests the Nuggets are opening up more payroll to ensure McGee stays in the Mile High City.
The 34-year-old Texas native averaged 5.3 points and 4.6 rebounds while blocking 1.4 blocks in 15.2 minutes of action last season. He was excused from the team in the middle of the playoffs after police seized property from his home that potentially contained Internet crimes against children. Birdman has still yet to be charged in the case.
In recent years, Andersen has lost some of the incredible athletic ability he had displayed earlier in his career and had struggled to find playing time once 2011 first-round pick Kenneth Faried began to play well in the second half of the season.
Andersen was set to make roughly $4.5 million next season and $4.8 million in the final year of his deal. The Nuggets are still on the hook to pay Andersen the money, but it will no longer count against the team cap.
Andersen spent seven years in Denver, including the last four, and will now become an unrestricted free agent.