We've been over this a few times now, but since today is Gerald Wallace day in our Exit Interviews series, I thought I'd bring it up again.
Gerald Wallace has two years left on his deal (at $10M a year) and is about as un-tradable a player as there is in the NBA. Of course there's no such thing as un-tradable as we've seen time and time again. But to make it happen, the Celtics would likely have to give up one of their prized draft picks. Or in an extreme case, he could be packaged with Rondo or another player we don't want to see go away, thus reducing the return on said player.
If the Celtics were to simply buy Wallace out they'd still be on the hook for nearly all of his contract against the cap would lose any slim chance of trading him.
There is, however, a provision in the CBA that allows for a team to "stretch" the cap hit of waiving a player over several years. To summarize:
So for Gerald Wallace, his salary would be counted as a cap hit of about $4M over 5 years instead of 2 years, $10M. Pick your poison. Do you want his cap hit being a drag on the books for the next 5 years after this one? Or would you rather just take the pain now and get him off the books in 2 years?
I think the key in this discussion is "what are you going to do with the cap space if you get it?"
If we are going to pursue a major free agent right now, then you could create additional cap space by stretch-waiving Wallace. Otherwise I'm not sure it makes much sense. Without an immediate benefit, I'd rather suck it up for 2 years and get his money off the books sooner rather than draw out the process over 5 years. Besides, he becomes an expiring contract next summer and while those assets are less valuable these days, they are still useful in matching salaries in big moves.
So what are your thoughts? What would you like to do with Wallace?