Vince Carter to Be Released by Phoenix Suns

Karthik TadisinaSenior Writer IDecember 5, 2011

Vince Carter.
Vince Carter.Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Another guard that could find himself on the free-agent market sooner rather than later is veteran Vince Carter.

Carter spent the 2010-11 NBA season with the Orlando Magic before getting traded to the Phoenix Suns in a blockbuster trade that sent Jason Richardson and Hedo Turkoglu along with others to Orlando.

According to ESPN insiders Marc Stein and Chris Broussard, the Phoenix Suns are expected to release the veteran guard within 72 hours (condition in his contract) after the end of the lockout. By making this move, the Suns will owe Carter only $4 million (versus the entirety of his $18 million yearly salary).

This move should not come as a surprise as it was largely speculated to occur at the end of the 2010-11 season. The 34-year-old Carter was acquired by Phoenix in some part due to his contract status.

Carter will likely be sought by those teams looking to add some shooting and scoring and is likely to sign on with a new team in the next few weeks.

According to Stein and Broussard, the Chicago Bulls, San Antonio Spurs and Miami Heat could be among the teams in Carter's services.

The Phoenix Suns are looking to free up some cap space in order to make an aggressive attempt to re-sign veteran Grant Hill in looking to make another playoff run.

Point guard Steve Nash is also entering the final year of his contract and it is uncertain what his future with the organization is as the trade deadline comes around in this shortened 2011-12 NBA season.

The Suns will likely make additional moves before the season, while keeping an eye on possibly rebuilding come the 2012 offseason.