A week after acquiring him from the Pelicans, the Bulls have waived veteran guard Tony Allen, the team announced today (via Twitter). Assuming he goes unclaimed on waivers, Allen will become an unrestricted free agent on Sunday.
Allen, 36, appeared in 22 games this season for the Pelicans, averaging 4.7 PPG and 2.1 RPG in a very limited role (12.4 MPG). He has been sidelined since mid-December due to a fracture in his leg, though he recently told TNT’s David Aldridge (Twitter link) that he has been medically cleared to return to action.
The Pelicans included Allen in last week’s trade that sent Nikola Mirotic to New Orleans in order to clear some salary and open up a roster spot. The veteran was never in Chicago’s plans, but the Bulls held onto him through the trade deadline in case they were able to include him a trade and extract a tiny bit of value, as they did with Jameer Nelson. Bulls executive John Paxson said on Thursday that the club would speak to Allen’s agent to determine whether or not he’d be waived — now, it seems Chicago is giving the 14-year veteran a chance to sign with a playoff team.
While it remains to be seen whether Allen will be scooped up right away by a contender, the Thunder were said to have some interest in him. Because he’s on a one-year, minimum salary contract, Allen could be claimed off waivers by any team besides the Pelicans. If he clears waivers, his modest 2017/18 cap hit will remain on the Bulls’ books.