4:39pm: The moves are official, the Wizards announced via press release.
4:30pm: The Wizards are releasing Josh Harrellson, Ish Smith, Jaron Johnson, Jaleel Roberts and Toure’ Murry, reports Jorge Castillo of The Washington Post (Twitter link). The team has yet to make a public announcement, but Castillo indicates the moves have indeed taken place. All were on non-guaranteed deals except Roberts, who had a $10K partial guarantee. The subtractions leave Washington with 15 players, all of whom have fully guaranteed salaries.
The players hitting waivers today faced long odds to make it to opening night, including Harrellson, who acknowledged he was likely auditioning for 29 other teams with his preseason performance. He averaged 3.9 points in 7.3 minutes per game over seven preseason appearances. The 26-year-old big man was making his return after 2014 back surgery that forced him to miss all of last season.
It was surprising to see Smith on a non-guaranteed deal with little chance to crack the opening night roster, given his strong performance down the stretch with the Sixers last season. The 27-year-old point guard averaged 12.1 points, 6.1 assists and 2.8 turnovers in 27.1 minutes per game in 25 contests for Philaelphia. He was again an efficient ball-distributor despite lower scoring in the preseason with Washington this month, notching 2.2 points, 4.0 assists and 1.0 turnover in 11.5 minutes per game over five preseason contests.
Murry, 25, rejoined the Wizards during the offseason after he was briefly with the team on a pair of 10-day contracts last season. The two-year NBA veteran combo guard averaged 3.5 points in 7.5 minutes per game during four preseason contests.
Johnson spent last season with the Rockets D-League team after going undrafted out of Louisiana Tech in 2014. The 23-year-old shooting guard posted 2.0 points in 4.7 minutes per game over six preseason appearances for Washington.
The Wizards signed Roberts in August after he went undrafted out of UNC Asheville in June and played for Washington’s summer league team in July. The 23-year-old center put up 3.3 points in 6.9 minutes per game in three preseason contests.