Barring a last minute trade, the Wizards are becoming more inclined to designate forward Andray Blatche as their amnesty player, according to source with knowledge of the situation. The Wizards continue to seek a trade partner for Blatche, who has spent his entire seven-year career in Washington, but that remains an unlikely scenario with Tuesday’s deadline looming.
By using the one-time amnesty provision on Blatche, the Wizards would remove the $23-million remaining on his contract from the salary cap. Blatche would still receive all of his money and become a free agent unless a team under the salary cap claims him on waivers.
The amnesty clause was implemented under the last collective bargaining agreement, and 12 teams have used the provision. Teams were allowed to waive players beginning on July 11. Elton Brand (Philadelphia), Luis Scola (Houston), Brendan Haywood (Dallas), Josh Childress (Phoenix) and Darko Milicic (Minnesota) have all been waived using the provision in the past week.
Since the Wizards nabbed Blatche with the 49th pick in 2005, has averaged 9.9 points and 5.5 rebounds. He signed a three-year extension in 2010 that restructured his existing deal to be worth $35 million over five years. But after averaging career highs of 16.8 points and 8.3 rebounds in the first year of the deal, Blatche regressed considerably last season, as he averaged just 8.5 points and 5.8 rebounds, struggling to stay in shape, and was routinely booed at home games at Verizon Center.
The Wizards have made recent moves suggesting that Blatche isn’t in the long-term plans. They drafted Jan Vesely sixth overall in 2011, and acquired veteran big men Nene and Emeka Okafor in trades the past four months.
Okafor: ‘It can be a nice season’