So how's that whole "We don't want players to control player movement" thing working out for you David Stern? Chauncey Billups, who was cut by the Knicks today in the most high-profile use of the league's new amnesty clause, is threatening teams who claim him that he will be a destructive presence if put in the wrong situation.
"I’ve been known as a leader, and I am a leader, but a leader can be as disruptive as he can be productive, especially when you carry a strong voice and people rally around you," Billups said in an interview today. "This is about me now. This is about me, and teams should know that right now.”
Under the new amnesty clause, a team can cut one player. That player is then put on waivers, where he can be claimed by a team under the salary cap. That team then bids for the player, and the team with the highest bid wins the player, with the player's original team paying the remaining salary. If an amnestied player goes unclaimed, he becomes a free agent.
The Knicks had picked up Billups' $14 million option for this year, but needed to get cap room to sign Tyson Chandler. Billups is making clear his intention to hit the free market and choose his destination, and is saying he'll retire rather than go someplace he doesn't want to go.
"I know some teams out there are saying, ‘Oh, Chauncey will be great in mentoring’ and I’m tired of that," he said. "I’ve got a few good years left to play, and I’m not trying to come in and sit on the bench, or be a mentor. I’m not going to be that guy. I want to go somewhere and win. I want to choose.”
Looks like the Miami Heat may have just found a point guard. And not even Dan Gilbert can stop that.
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