5 NBA Teams Hoping Chicago Bulls Amnesty Carlos Boozer

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5 NBA Teams Hoping Chicago Bulls Amnesty Carlos Boozer
Chuck Burton

It has been speculated that the Chicago Bulls may use their amnesty on Carlos Boozer in an effort to free up cap space. If they do, one team’s garbage might become another team’s treasure.

Well, at least he might become another team’s affordable and serviceable player.

The flip side of the amnesty clause is that other teams can make out like bandits. That’s because, unlike a normal waiver claim, a team can pick up an amnestied player for less than the value of his full contract.

Per Larry Coon’s CBA FAQ:

But amnesty is different from the normal waiver process in that it allows teams to make either a full or partial waiver claim. When a team makes a full waiver claim it acquires the player, assumes his full contract, and pays all remaining salary obligations (and the waiving team has no further salary obligation to the player).

Full waiver claims have precedence over partial waiver claims -- if one team makes a full waiver claim and another makes a partial waiver claim, the team making the full waiver claim is awarded the player. If multiple teams make full waiver claims, the player is awarded to the team with the worst record.

So, if a team bids $3 million for Boozer’s $16.8 million deal, that's all they have to pay. The Bulls pay the remaining $13.8 million. Boozer might not be worth $16.8 million, but he’s certainly worth $3 million. That's the upside of amnesty.

So, why aren't more teams getting in on this action?

Because, as Coon explains, not just anyone can bid on an amnestied player: 

In order to submit a bid for a partial waiver claim, the bidding team must have cap room equivalent to the portion of their bid that would be charged to team salary in that season, plus the amount of any likely bonuses (see question number 73) for that season.

If necessary, teams can create this cap room by waiving non-guaranteed players, but not by making trades. The team must make the cap room available immediately upon being awarded the amnesty claim.

If a player clears amnesty waivers, he can be signed by anyone. In Boozer’s case, it’s highly improbable he gets to that point. Not all the teams who can bid on him will, but there are enough with both the need and the cap space to assure he'll get at least one bid. Therefore, no teams that are expected to be over the cap were considered for this list. 

These rankings are based on how well Boozer would fit with his new team. They are listed from bottom to top.

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