With rosters cut down and inactive players determined, not one member of last year's bench will be active on an NBA roster Tuesday, opening day of the 2005-06 season. And only one, Awvee Storey, is even on any roster. Storey who landed with the Wizards was declared inactive for Wednesday's opening game.
The list is long, mainly because the Nets tried to find a big man to replace those lost in the Carter trade.
For those who forgot [and who doesn't want to??] here is the list: Ron Mercer, Travis Best, Rodney Buford, Jabari Smith, Billy Thomas, Kaniel Dickens, Donnell Harvey, Elden Campbell and Jerome Moiso.
Dickens was released last Wednesday by the Mavs. Thomas was let go on Friday by the Wizards. They're trying to find new homes in basketball's wide world of minor leagues. Best has already found his place, joining Unics Kazan in Siberia [yes THAT Siberia]. Campbell is enjoying retirement. Mercer is considering it.
The rest are unaccounted for. Buford was last seen shooting hoops in a tournament in his hometown of Omaha [and near the end of an 82games.com list of the NBA's worst players]. He was also nosing around the Italian league, particularly Virtus Bologna where no doubt he would be a good influence of Net draft choice Christian Drejer. Jabari Smith was supposed to sign a contract with Unicaja Malaga when ironically Unicaja lost out on at attempt to sign Ben Handlogten.
No doubt most if not all will find a place to play. If Scott Burrell could dominate the Philippine League, anything is possible. But as it looks now, the Nets' 2004-05 bench will soon be long forgotten