At some point while writing this post, I forgot that Carlos Delfino’s contract was, rather than an expiring, nonguaranteed next season. My premise had been that the team would not re-sign him, opting to save future flexibility. That’s incorrect.
As the contract becomes nonguaranteed next season, the decision isn’t even whether to re-sign Delfino. It’s whether or not they should waive him.
It’s unlikely that the Dwight Howard and Josh Smith situations will be resolved by June 30. While Weiner points out that several teams would have cap space by July to absorb Delfino in a trade in the event that Houston suddenly needed the space (ie: if Howard suddenly became available), that contingency seems quite risky. My bet is that, like the move to amnesty Scola, Houston will waive Delfino, keeping their options as open as possible. They’ll then look to replace his production from other sources, once the dust settles.
The point here is not that $3million is too much. It’s that the Rockets will want to maintain maximum flexibility during the summer months.