Skip navigation
Sign up to follow your favorites on all your devices.
Sign up

Spurs waive Rasual Butler, not Matt Bonner, to sign Kevin Martin

San Antonio Spurs v Phoenix Suns

PHOENIX, AZ - FEBRUARY 21: Rasual Butler #18 of the San Antonio Spurs handles the ball during the NBA game against the Phoenix Suns at Talking Stick Resort Arena on February 21, 2016 in Phoenix, Arizona. The Spurs defeated the Suns 118-111. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Getty Images

As expected, the Spurs signed Kevin Martin.

The big question: Would they waive Rasual Butler or Matt Bonner to clear a roster spot?

Spurs release:

The San Antonio Spurs today announced that they have requested waivers on forward Rasual Butler.

Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports:

the franchise labored over the decision to release Butler or Matt Bonner, league sources told The Vertical. The Spurs waited until Wednesday to inform Butler of the decision because coach Gregg Popovich missed the team’s two-game road trip that ended Tuesday night, sources said.
The Spurs always have either Popovich or general manager R.C. Buford tell a player in person that he’s been let go, sources said.

Butler earned a roster spot in training camp, but he spent the season on the fringe of the rotation. Still, he played more than thrice as many minutes as Bonner.

In the end, San Antonio opted for roster balance, dropping a shooting guard for a shooting guard. The same strategy dictated waiving point guard Ray McCallum for point guard Andre Miller.

Perhaps, an expected meeting with the Warriors would’ve tempted the Spurs to go smaller and drop Bonner. But the stretch center can be useful in certain matchups.

Most importantly, San Antonio got a talent upgrade in Martin. The player waived was unlikely to play a meaningful role in the playoffs, though the chance made it a decision worth seriously considering.

Unfortunately for Butler, he loses his chance at a ring. Ineligible for the playoffs, the veteran appears unlikely to receive offers elsewhere.