This just in from David Aldridge at NBA.com:
The Boston Celtics’ expected rebuilding began Thursday when veteran forward Rasheed Wallace officially decided to retire after 15 NBA seasons, a league source said.
He adds this:
He left more than $12 million on the table by opting to retire.
I’ve been batting around emails with Larry Coon, the salary cap expert who created the online Bible of salary cap information, to try and figure out the exact salary cap implications of Sheed’s retirement. It’s not a simple thing, and we don’t have a complete answer yet. The team may still have to negotiate a buyout of Wallace’s contract, in which case whatever they pay Sheed would be included in this year’s salary cap.
Coon’s entry on retired players includes this line:
Any money paid to a player is included in team salary, even if the player is no longer playing or has retired.
There appears to be some precedent for a player’s contract staying on a team’s books if he retires in the middle of the contract but does not file official retirement papers with the league. If Sheed does file papers, it would appear from my reading of the cap rules and past league precedent that his contract—minus a buyout figure, if there is one—would be wiped off the C’s books completely.
If anyone has any further insight, by all means let me know. I hope to have a more formal answer soon.
In any case, good-bye, Sheed. It was as crazy a year as we all expected.