The NBA trade deadline has come and gone, but that doesn’t mean the transactional madness has to stop. As we see pretty much every season, a small but interesting buyout market has developed due to veteran players being waived — usually after trades.
This season has some unique financial wrinkles that our Sam Quinn explained much better than I ever could, but that doesn’t mean that the players will stay on the shelf. All of the vets on this list could contribute to a playoff contender in some way, and will likely find new homes in the coming weeks.
Here are seven buyout candidates, along with teams that have reportedly expressed interest:
Lowry and the Hornets have no mutual interest in a partnership, so it seems to only be a matter of time before a buyout agreement is reached. The veteran has clearly lost some zip from his glory days, but he has NBA title experience and proved last year with the Miami Heat (averages of 11 points, five assists and four rebounds on 42% 3-point shooting in the Finals) that he’s more than capable of contributing to a winner come playoff time.
The 30-year-old veteran guard has been an NBA starter for the better part of the past four seasons, so he should have no problem finding a new home once he completes a buyout with the Toronto Raptors. Part of Dinwiddie’s appeal is his ability to play both guard positions, making him a more seamless fit with a variety of roster shapes. He sat near the Mavericks‘ bench during Thursday night’s game at Madison Square Garden, perhaps tipping his hand at an eventual union.
Reported interest: Lakers, Mavericks, Pelicans, 76ers
Morris is expected to be bought out following a trade to the Spurs, and there’s almost always a market for a combo forward capable of knocking down 3-pointers. He hit 40% from long distance this season with the 76ers, and has also shown the chops to play some small-ball five in limited minutes to give his next team a different card to play.
Reported interest: Timberwolves
Mobility may be an issue at this juncture of his career, but don’t be confused — Gallinari is still a straight bucket. The 6-foot-10 sharpshooter averaged 18 points, seven rebounds and three assists per 36 minutes between the Wizards and Pistons this season, expanding his role by playing some backup center — which may be intriguing to whichever teams show interest. The 35-year-old is a career 38% 3-point shooter and is expected to take meetings with teams beginning Friday.
Reported interest: Lakers, Celtics
Harris wasn’t able to carve out much of a role with the Pistons, even when healthy, but he’s a career 44% 3-point shooter with playoff experience — not the type of player contenders come by very often. Any team with a ball-dominant superstar could benefit from the floor-spacing Harris provides.
Reported interest: Bulls, Lakers
There’s got to be room on somebody’s roster for “Thadgic Johnson” right? The 6-foot-8 vet mostly plays backup center these days, where he serves as an adept playmaker and crafty finisher around the rim. The 35-year-old has playoff experience dating back to 2008 and would be a strong locker-room presence for any contender.
Reported interest: Suns
Bonus: Killian Hayes
Though technically not a buyout, Hayes was waived by the Pistons fewer than four years after being drafted No. 7 overall. Despite starting the majority of his games with Detroit, he was never able to find his footing — largely due to his inability to consistently make shots. That being said, he’s still just 22 years old, and still possesses all the talent that made him a high lottery pick to begin with. Someone will likely give him a shot.
Reported interest: Spurs, Grizzlies, Wizards