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HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS — For days there have been rumblings that the amnesty clause in the new collective bargaining agreement would be used on Portland Trail Blazers guard Brandon Roy. Apparently it will not be necessary.
ESPN The Magazine’s Chris Broussard is reporting that Roy is set to retire, due to the degenerative knee issues:
Sources say Roy has privately conceded his ongoing knee trouble would have inevitably led to a reduced role, and given his close connection with the Portland community the former All-Star does not want to end up being released through the forthcoming amnesty clause and thus eligible to be picked up by another team.
Roy’s retirement would eventually give the Blazers salary-cap relief. League rules call for a waiting period of one year from the date of the player’s injury or illness, after which the Blazers could get Roy’s contract off their books.
Since Roy played all the way into the playoffs last season, that date will likely be April 28, 2012 — one year from the day the Blazers were eliminated from the playoffs.
According to NBA rules, a league physician will have to confirm that Roy is unfit to play for the Blazers to get the salary-cap relief.
As recently as Monday, Blazers officials had said that, despite considerable speculation to the contrary, they would not use the amnesty clause on Roy. The clause allows a team to release one player and gain salary cap relief; however, the team must still pay the salary.
“Our plan right now is not to use the amnesty,” Blazers president Larry Miller told the Oregonian newspaper. “We expect Brandon to be a part of this team when the season starts.”