The Bucks have signed Jorge Gutierrez to a second 10-day contract, the team announced (Twitter link). Uncertainty over the length of Larry Sanders‘ suspension loomed as a potential stumbling block to a new deal for Milwaukee and Gutierrez, but it appears Sanders will remain on suspension for a while longer, allowing the Bucks to once more carry a 16th man. The point guard’s first 10-day pact expired at the end of Friday.
Gutierrez had been the team’s 16th player, an allowance the league grants when a team has a player on the suspended list, as is the case with Sanders, who served the 10th game of his suspension Friday. The NBA had set the minimum length of the center’s suspension at 10 games and stated that it would end once Sanders is in full compliance with the league’s anti-drug program, so evidently Sanders has not yet satisfied the requirements.
Kidd has given the 26-year-old Gutierrez a fair amount of playing time, including one start, and the second-year NBA veteran has put up 4.5 points, 1.5 assists and 1.0 turnover in 14.8 minutes per game over four appearances. He posted similar results in a 15-game stint with the Nets at the end of last season.
Milwaukee will have to either sign Gutierrez for the season or let him sit in free agency once his second 10-day contract with the team expires. He parlayed a pair of 10-day contracts with the Nets into a deal that carried into this season with salary that became partially guaranteed when he remained under contract for training camp, but the Sanders situation figures to again serve as a complication once the latest 10-day deal runs out. The Bucks have the option of terminating Gutierrez’s 10-day contract early if the NBA lifts Sanders’ suspension soon, though they’d still be on the hook for the full amount, likely $48,028, of Gutierrez’s short-term deal.
Chuck Myron contributed to this post.