New Orleans Pelicans point guard Toney Douglas' $1.3 million contract was placed on waivers today. If the Pelicans had kept Douglas on the books on July 13th, that full amount would become guaranteed for the 2016-2017 season. Since they cut him before the deadline tonight, they'll owe him nothing.
Now, Douglas will be on the waiver wire for 48 hours, where any team can claim him. Normally, teams have to use sufficient cap room or a large enough exception to take on a player's entire contract, but because Douglas' salary is the league minimum, any team can claim him using the minimum salary exception. That officially makes Douglas a candidate for the Clippers' backup point guard needs.
Douglas had a strong year in New Orleans, playing 21 minutes per game, ave8raging 15.1 points, 4.5 assists, 4.1 rebounds, and 2 steals per 36 minutes, and shooting 39.9% from deep. He has a solid defensive reputation from earlier in his career, and at 30 years old he isn't likely to have lost that. For his career, Douglas has averaged 7.8 points, 2.3 assists, 2.2 rebounds, and 0.9 steals per game in 19.2 minutes. He's played 370 career NBA games in 7 NBA seasons.
The Clippers are continuing their search for a part-time back-up point guard to replace Pablo Prigioni. The 39-year-old Prigioni played a limited role last season, playing in garbage time and snagging spot minutes whenever the Austin Rivers-led second unit needed a true point guard to facilitate the offense. In total, Prigioni played 823 minutes in 59 games, averaging 6.3 points, 5.7 assists, 5.0 rebounds, and 2.3 steals per 36 minutes. Pablo also shot a disappointing 28-95 (29.5%) from deep.
It's unclear if Douglas will end up being available to the Clippers. The waiver priority order goes by worst record, meaning that 24 other teams will have priority on Douglas, even if the Clippers want him. However, the waiver wire can be unpredictable, and if Douglas clears he will get to choose any team who offers him (possibly for a raise over his current $1.3M, which is the most the Clippers could offer him).
Even if Douglas doesn't fall to the Clippers in the waiver wire order, he'll be one more point guard name added to the supply pool, and one more team's demand for a back-up point guard filled. That means that the other remaining names (Mario Chalmers, Norris Cole, Beno Udrih, Steve Blake, Kirk Hinrich, etc.) all become a little more feasible for the Clippers.