Colangelo Clarifies Position on Calderon
Raptors GM Bryan Colangelo spoke to the media in Toronto today about the team’s situation entering free agency, and some members of the media left the room feeling that Colangelo had intimated that he would use the amnesty clause to get out from under Jose Calderon in an effort to clear cap space.
“I think Jose is a professional,” Colangelo told gathered media. “He knows this, its part of the business. I have talked to his agent. I explained to him some of the things that were being speculating on. We discussed it. That’s my means of communicating. Rather than let something just hang there and be an unknown. I like to be more… I like to converse and discuss those situations and make sure people are prepared for whatever might happen, whether its a trade or whether it’s the possibility of an amnesty in this case.”
“Again, Jose is a very good basketball player and very important part of this team and he’s become a leader on this team. But like I said, if we feel there is a piece that will make us better or improve our basketball team and we’ve got the flexibility and the commitment to commit those resources accordingly. I think we should always pursue that.”
“I think Jose understands that. Again, Jose is a pro. He grown man and he understands that it is a business. If he comes back we’re going to be happy to have him and Coach loves Jose Calderon. But again as we construct the roster, you do your best to put the best possible team on the floor with a vision and a plan and thats what we’re doing now.”
Since that meeting, Colangelo told HOOPSWORLD that while that was discussed, it was the media present that made the leap to Calderon, and that no decision about Calderon’s future has been made with regard to the amnesty clause.
Colangelo also announced that the team will extend qualifying offers to Sonny Weems and Jerryd Bayless, making them restricted free agents, and that the team would decline its option on Solomon Alabi, who is nonetheless expected to play on the team’s summer league iteration.
Colangelo stopped short of mentioning free agent (Canadian) point guard Steve Nash, but it’s clear he is their top free agent target as the NBA prepares for free agency period to commence. The team will also be pursuing a small forward, according to Colangelo.