NBA Rumors: Jefferson Release Adds Spurs to Ridiculous Caron Butler Bidding War

Michael DixonAnalyst IIINovember 18, 2016

SAN ANTONIO, TX - APRIL 20:  Forward Richard Jefferson #24 of the San Antonio Spurs reacts after making a three-point shot against the Memphis Grizzlies in Game Two of the Western Conference Quarterfinals in the 2011 NBA Playoffs on April 20, 2011 at AT&T Center in San Antonio, Texas.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Someone had to be the first player to be released under the new amnesty provision. All signs are pointing to that person being Richard Jefferson, of the San Antonio Spurs.

Wednesday, Dec. 7 at 1:35 p.m. EST

Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports is reporting that the Spurs will cut ties with Jefferson. 

So, what will they do with the money cleared from their salary cap? Well, according to Kurt Helin of Pro Basketball Talk, Caron Butler is a viable option.

This is one that I can't make a ton of sense of. For the sake of Spurs fans, I hope that this is just baseless speculation.

Lets take a look at the tale of the tape:

  Richard Jefferson Caron Butler
Age 31 31
Career PPG 16.4 16.6
2010-2011 PPG 11 15
Career RPG 5 5.9
2010-2011 RPG 3.9 4.1
Career APG 2.7 2.9
2010-2011 APG 1.3 1.6

That would seem to benefit Butler, but those statistics are a little misleading. Playing on a low-scoring team in San Antonio, Jefferson hasn't been forced to be a huge part of the offense. The same can't be said about Butler. When he's been on the court, he's been a top option on his team.

That's going to bolster his numbers a little bit, isn't it?

But that's not what makes the bidding war for Butler so ridiculous. As Helin said, the list of teams going after Butler includes the "Bulls, Clippers, Nets and others."

Butler has had serious issues staying on the court throughout his career. In the 2005-06 season, he played 75 games for the Wizards. Since then, he's only played more than 70 games in a season once. 

In that same period of time, Jefferson has only failed to play that many games once. In all other seasons, he's played in at least 81 games. 

When you're talking about a player in his early 30's, a consistent inability to stay on the court is a real concern. It's also worth noting that Butler played in only 29 games last year. 

That's what makes his rumored (according to Helin) amount of suitors so ridiculous. Are the Spurs really using their amnesty on Jefferson so the can clear up room to go after Butler. 

That's just not that much of an upgrade, if any upgrade at all.

The Spurs would be better off keeping Richardson or clearing cap space to use their money elsewhere.

The list of teams vying for Butler's services is already far too great. The Spurs don't need to make that list any bigger.


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