Sam Cassell, Jamaal Magloire, Brent Barry… There’s a lot of noise these days about players getting picked up by teams trying to make a deep playoff run this spring. It has become a trend in recent years. Veterans stuck in losing franchises get their contracts bought out and join playoff squads that may give them a shot at the ring (or at least at reviving their careers). How’s that working out for those players and the clubs that sign them?
Not all that well.
Of the 24 players bought out of their contracts and subsequently signed by playoff teams between January 1 and the beginning of the playoffs the last five seasons, only two (Lindsey Hunter and Glenn Robinson) won the championship that year. Hunter averaged just 2.4 ppg for the Pistons in the 2004 playoffs following a trade that sent him from Detroit to Boston in February and a release that got him back in Motown later that month. Meanwhile, Robinson scored 50 points (on 35.6 percent shooting) in San Antonio’s title run.
Hunter’s and Robinson’s meager statistical production is more the rule than the exception among this bunch. Only one of the 24 players researched averaged double figures in scoring in the postseason. That would be Tim Thomas, who excelled with the Suns after being released by the Bulls in March 2006 – and cashed in big with the Clippers that summer.
(No wonder they were waived in the first place) .
Tyrone Hill (Philadelphia) / 2.8 ppg, 2.8 rpg, 14.1 mpg
Bimbo Coles (Boston) / 0.0 ppg, 0.7 apg, 3.3 mpg
Chris Whitney (Orlando) / 3.1 ppg, 1.0 apg, 15.9 mpg
Eddie Griffin (New Jersey) / DNP
Hubert Davis / New Jersey / DNP
Charlie Ward (San Antonio) / 2.2 ppg, 0.2 apg, 2.6 mpg
Scott Williams (Dallas) / 0.0 ppg, 1.3 rpg, 3.7 mpg
Vin Baker (New York) / 5.5 ppg, 3.0 rpg, 14.3 mpg
Michael Doleac (Denver) / 2.0 ppg, 1.4 rpg, 9.8 rpg
Lindsey Hunter (Detroit) / 2.4 ppg, 0.9 apg, 12.1 mpg
Brevin Knight (Milwaukee) / 4.2 ppg, 3.4 apg, 20.2 mpg
Eddie House (Sacramento) / 3.0 ppg, 1.3 apg, 7.7 mpg
Qyntel Woods (Miami) / DNP
Alonzo Mourning (Miami) / 6.1 ppg, 4.8 rpg, 2.20 bpg, 16.9 mpg
Wesley Person (Denver) / 3.8 ppg, 37.5 3P% 13.5 mpg
Elden Campbell (Detroit) / 1.2 ppg, 1.8 rpg, 5.7 mpg
Glenn Robinson (San Antonio) / 3.8 ppg, 1.6 rpg, 8.7 mpg
Alan Henderson (Dallas) / 2.0 ppg, 1.9 rpg, 10.2 mpg
Dale Davis (Indiana) / 5.3 ppg, 6.2 rpg, 23.9 mpg
Chucky Atkins (Memphis) / 9.8 ppg, 3.0 apg, 36.4 3P%, 25.5 mpg
Tony Delk (Detroit) / 3.0 ppg, 1.1 rpg, 8.6 mpg
Tim Thomas (Phoenix) / 15.1 ppg, 6.3 rpg, 44.4 3P%, 31.8 mpg
Chris Webber (Detroit) / 9.9 ppg, 6.3 rpg, 1.5 apg, 25.2 mpg
Eddie Jones (Miami) / 3.3 ppg, 1.7 apg, 22.2 FG%, 22.0 mpg