A look at the training camp rosters of all five Northwest Division teams, with an eye on open spots on each roster, and the potential favorites we might see emerge.Denver Nuggets Guaranteed Contracts:Carmelo Anthony Earl Boykins Marcus Camby Yakhouba Diawara Reggie Evans Nene Hilario Julius Hodge Linas Kleiza Kenyon Martin Andre Miller Eduardo Najera Jamal Sampson J.R. Smith Joe Smith Non-Guaranteed:Courtney Alexander Anthony Carter
Larry Ayuso (Cut)Corey Williams
The Nuggets have 14 guaranteed contacts on their books already, and didnt take long to waive three of their six training camp invites: Larry Ayuso, Corey Williams
and Jefferson Sobral. The overwhelming favorite to make the 15th spot is veteran point guard Anthony Carter
, as coach George Karl
has already come out supporting keeping him around and has cited the need for a 3rd point guard due to his teams run and gun style of play.
Minnesota Timberwolves Guaranteed Contracts:Mark Blount Ricky Davis Randy Foye Kevin Garnett Eddie Griffin Trenton Hassell Troy Hudson Mike James Marko Jaric Mark Madsen Rashad McCants Justin Reed Craig Smith Partially Guaranteed:Bracey Wright
($332,105) increases to 498,157 on October 31st, and to 664,209 on December 15thNon-Guaranteed:Paul Shirley Vin Baker
Despite Bracey Wright
only being guaranteed half of his salary ($332,105), its almost certainly a substantial enough for the TWolves to keep him around if they have any type of feelings for him at all. Wright therefore brings the number of available roster spots to 1, and considering the type of players Minnesota invited, it seems likely they will remain there as well unless Vin Baker
finds a way to regain his all-star form.
Portland TrailblazersGuaranteed Contracts:LaMarcus Aldridge Dan Dickau Juan Dixon Jarrett Jack Raef LaFrentz Jamaal Magloire Darius Miles Travis Outlaw Joel Przybilla Zach Randolph Sergio Rodriguez Brandon Roy Martell Webster Non-Guaranteed:Ime Udoka Zendon HamiltonAnalysis:
Portland has only 13 players under contract, which makes it slightly more odd that they only invited two players to training camp. Aaron Miles
was supposed to be here too, but an injury prevented him from conducting two-a-days. Both Udoka and Hamilton have solid NBA experience underneath their belt, so it really wouldnt be much of a surprise to see either or even both make the team. Small Forward, which just happens to be Udokas position, is probably the place Portland is lacking depth at the most.
On a sidenote, Sergio Rodriguez
was the only player besides Andrea Bargnani
to receive less than the maximum allowed amount of 120% of the rookie scale, presumably to help pay his buyout from Estudiantes in a more tax effective way. Hell make around $800,000 less than the player drafted right after himMaurice Ager
should both players be kept for the full four years of their contract.
Seattle Supersonics Guaranteed Contracts:Ray Allen Nick Collison Danny Fortson
Mickael Gelabale Rashard Lewis Johan Petro Luke Ridnour
Mouhamed Sene Robert Swift Earl Watson Chris Wilcox Damien WilkinsNon-Guaranteed:Kenny Adeleke Denham Brown Desmon Farmer
Noel Felix (Cut)Milt Palacio Mike WilksKareem Rush Analysis:
One of the most intriguing training camp battles youll find, the Sonics have only 12 players under contract and some definite holes to fill on their roster. Noel Felix was already cut (he actually asked to in order to sign a $500,000 contract overseas with Maccabi Tel Aviv to be their 2007 version of Maceo Baston
), which means that if Seattle is looking to keep one big man around (not a give-in), Kenny Adeleke
is certainly their guy. From what weve seen a few times over the past 6 months, he would make a very nice choice too. Seattle will reportedly keep 13 or 14 players (ownership might only allow 13 to continue to cut costs), but one of them will surely be a guard. Mike Wilks
will battle Milt Palacio
for the right to be the teams 3rd point guard, and Desmon Farmer
will go up against Denham Brown
and Kareem Rush
on the wing. Rush has yet to participate in scrimmages due to a groin injury, but seems to have the support of the coaching staff. Farmer impressed in summer league in Salt Lake City, particularly with his outside shooting, and has helped himself throughout the summer with his energetic style of play.
Utah JazzGuaranteed Contracts:Rafael Araujo Carlos Boozer Ronnie Brewer Jarron Collins Derek Fisher Gordan Giricek Matt Harpring Andrei Kirilenko
C.J. Miles Paul Millsap Mehmet Okur Deron Williams Partially Guaranteed:Dee Brown Roger Powell
($125,000)Non-Guaranteed:Brian Chase Hiram Fuller Tyler Smith Frans Steyn Analysis:
Another team with plenty of roster spots to spare, the Jazz brought in 6 players to look at for their 3 available openings. Roger Powell
looks like an early favorite to make it after already having being guaranteed $125,000, while former teammate Dee Brown
seems likely as well after being drafted #46. Even though he went a spot later, fellow 2006 draftee Paul Millsap
seems to have impressed the Jazz quite a bit more than Brown over the summer, as he received a 2 year fully guaranteed deal for above the minimum with a team option on the third (fully guaranteed) year. Millsap will make $625,000 as a rookie, second in this
years draft class (amongst 2nd rounders) only to Solomon Jones