On October 26, the 30 NBA teams will submit their opening-night rosters to the league — but the cuts will come at least 48-hours earlier, giving time for the players to clear waivers.
Teams can carry up to 15 players into the regular season, which translates to 450 potential positions — assuming every franchise carries a full 15.
Including the expected signing of Damien Wilkens to the Charlotte Hornets, 570 players are under contract for the coming season.
At least 120 players (21.1 percent of the league), will be cut before the end of October.
Currently 415 have fully guaranteed contracts, but it’s not altogether uncommon for a team to let go of a player with promised money to keep a prospect they feel has more potential.
That said, many of the 155 players with non/partially-guaranteed deals are destined to be cut over the next two weeks.
Two teams have over 15 players guaranteed include the Boston Celtics with 16 and the Detroit Pistons with 17. Expect Detroit to cut veteran forward Danny Granger, but how both teams get from 16 to 15 remains a mystery.
Some interesting players on the bubble include veterans trying to get back into the league like Metta World Peace (Los Angeles Lakers), JaVale McGee (Dallas Mavericks) and Jordan Crawford (Chicago Bulls).
Others look like locks to stick like Mike Muscala (Atlanta Hawks) and a trio on the Philadelphia 76ers (Robert Covington, JaKarr Sampson and Hollis Thompson).
The Indiana Pacers have 15 players locked in but gave veteran Toney Douglas a $600,000 guarantee on his almost $1.2 million salary. They’ll need to make room to keep him.
The San Antonio Spurs have 13 guaranteed, along with Matt Bonner and Jimmer Fredette, who have half of their contracts locked in.
The following table details each team’s roster position midway through the preseason:
|Golden State Warriors||20||13||7|
|Los Angeles Clippers||16||14||2|
|Los Angeles Lakers||19||12||7|
|New Orleans Pelicans||19||13||6|
|New York Knicks||19||13||6|
|Oklahoma City Thunder||19||15||4|
|Portland Trail Blazers||17||12||5|
|San Antonio Spurs||20||13||7|
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