Oct. 22: The Pelicans officially waived Crawford today, the team announced in a press release.
Oct. 21, 4:27pm: The Pelicans asked the NBA to guarantee that their request for an injury exception would be granted before signing Nelson, tweets Adrian Wojanarowski of ESPN. When that appeal was denied, New Orleans had to waive a player before Nelson could be added to the roster.
3:24pm: The Pelicans are waiving guard Jordan Crawford, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (Twitter link). Crawford’s contract is only partially guaranteed for $250K, so most of his salary will come off New Orleans’ cap.
Today’s agreement with Jameer Nelson would have pushed the Pelicans into the luxury tax, but letting Crawford go will allow them to sneak back under the tax threshold and will provide some breathing room below the hard cap. New Orleans will actually create a small amount of savings through the two transactions due to Crawford’s $1.7MM cap hit, as Bobby Marks of ESPN details.
New Orleans could have waited until after tomorrow’s game to apply for a hardship exception in order to sign Nelson. Due to mounting injuries, the Pelicans will still be eligible for the exception, which would allow them to add a 16th player, but it’s not clear whether or not take advantage of it.
Crawford, who will turn 29 on Monday, appeared in 21 total games during his stint with New Orleans at the end of last season and the start of this year. In those games, he averaged 13.6 PPG and 3.0 APG in just 22.6 minutes per contest. He’ll reach free agency early next week, assuming he clears waivers.