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After the Draft, the Housecleaning

Now that the draft is behind them, the Clippers are making the other necessary roster decisions of the off-season.  Yesterday, they exercised the final year of Quinton Ross' contract, which at $826K makes him the biggest 4 year vet bargain in the NBA.  Today, they waived Daniel Ewing and declined their option on James Singleton, making each of them unrestricted free agents.  Here's the press release:

The Los Angeles Clippers today waived guard Daniel Ewing and declined to exercise the third-year contract option on forward James Singleton, it was announced by Vice President of Basketball Operations Elgin Baylor.

In two years with the Clippers, Ewing averaged 3.4 points, 1.4 assists 13.3 minutes per game.  Ewing was the 32nd overall selection by the Clippers in the 2005 NBA Draft.

Singleton, who originally signed with Los Angeles as a free agent prior to the start of the 2005-06 NBA season, averaged 2.6 points, 2.7 rebounds and 10.1 minutes per game over his two-year career with the Clippers.  In a related matter, the Clippers also declined to tender Singleton a qualifying offer, making him an unrestricted free agent as of July 1st.  

With these moves, the Clippers' roster currently stands at 11 players.

I'm not exactly clear on who these 11 players are.  By my count, there are 10 - Brand, Kaman, Mobley, Cassell, Maggette, Livingston, Thomas, Davis, Williams and now Ross.  According to the Hoops Hype salary page, they still hold an option for next year on Will Conroy, so I guess he's 11.  However, I think they have to exercise that option pretty soon, and there's no way they're going to offer him a guaranteed contract.  So while the roster may officially stand at 11, the current guaranteed contracts stands at 10.  

Of course Thornton represents a guaranteed roster spot also, though he is not yet signed.  So Thornton does indeed make it 11.  The latest on MBFGC has him playing another year in Europe, and coming over to the NBA next summer.  

A veteran point guard, either Jason Hart or someone roughly equivalent, will sign a guaranteed contract.  That makes 12.  MDsr likes to start the season with 14 contracts, in order to maintain some level of roster flexibility.  So as of now we would assume that Conroy, Guillermo Diaz and Jared Jordan will be fighting for one, or at most two, roster spots.  It would be great to save the 14th spot for a shooter like Jason Kapono or Matt Carroll, but it may be impossible to sign a point guard AND a shooter of that caliber for the mid-level exception, which is what they have to work with.