9:56am: Team has officially waived Wolters, the Bucks announced.
“We appreciate everything Nate gave to the Bucks both on and off the court,” Hammond said. “We know we will see him again in the NBA and wish him well in the future.”
9:21am: The Bucks have waived Wolters, a league source tells Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports (Twitter link), though the team has yet to make an announcement. A source has told Kennedy the same (Twitter link).
FRIDAY, 8:58am: Milwaukee is signing Martin and waiving Wolters this morning, tweets Charles F. Gardner of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. The Bucks had trade talks with several teams Thursday but couldn’t strike a deal, Gardner writes in a full story. Jared Karnes, the agent for Wolters, hadn’t received confirmation that the guard would be waived but said that it wouldn’t surprise him if that indeed took place, as Karnes told Gardner on Thursday night.
THURSDAY, 7:12pm: The Bucks haven’t waived Wolters yet, and are trying to find a trade partner for him before taking that route, Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders reports (Twitter links). There’s a belief that Wolters won’t clear waivers if cut, which is why teams may want to trade for him now to ensure that they get him, Kennedy adds.
10:34am: The Bucks are expected to waive Nate Wolters to accommodate their 10-day deal with Kenyon Martin, reports Gery Woelfel of The Journal Times (Twitter link). Milwaukee can’t sign Martin unless it offloads one of the 15 players it has on the roster, and it appears Wolters is the one to go, as I speculated, since his contract contains the least amount of guaranteed money among anyone on the Bucks. He’s making the one-year veteran’s minimum salary this year, but next year’s minimum salary is non-guaranteed.
Wolters has seen action in just 11 games so far this season, though he did receive only his second stint of 20 or more minutes since the season began in Wednesday’s blowout win over the Sixers. The 6’4″ combo guard played a much more prominent role last year, starting 31 games and averaging 7.2 points, 3.2 assists and 1.0 turnover in 22.6 minutes per game.
The now 23-year-old Wolters was the 38th overall pick in 2013, so it wouldn’t be surprising to see a team claim his deal off waivers, though that’s just my speculation. He’s on a contract that covers three seasons, so teams would need more than the minimum-salary exception to submit a claim.
Milwaukee is about $7.3MM shy of the salary cap, so if the Bucks are stuck with Wolters’ salary, which would happen if he clears waivers, they’ll still be left with plenty of flexibility. Their team salary as it stands is about $1MM shy of the minimum team salary, but because Milwaukee is still paying money to Drew Gooden, whom the team waived using the amnesty clause in 2013, the Bucks don’t have to make up that gap.