The Boston Celtics released forward Perry Jones III Saturday as part of a trim-down to the 15-man limit prior to Monday's deadline for setting Opening Day rosters.
Boston also waived training camp invite Corey Walden, a guard likely to land with the Maine Red Claws, the C's' NBA Developmental League affiliate.
Jones was acquired by the organization in July as part of the benefits reaped from the Oklahoma City Thunder's salary-shedding. Boston received $2 million in cash that will end up covering Jones' salary as well a 2019 second-round draft pick in exchange for a conditional second-rounder. The deal also freed up $2.1 in trade exception for the Thunder.
Oklahoma City utilized Jones' potential in 2014-15 during the long absences of Kevin Durant at the small forward position. Boston felt intrigued by his versatility and athleticism, as coach Brad Stevens noted in practice.
"Perry has a chance to be a very, very good multi-positional defender and he's got a chance to be a guy that can play off closeouts, make shots, or play switches," said Stevens.
Jones unfortunately did not show up in preseason play however, recording just 2.0 points and 1.6 rebounds in 8.3 minutes per game for Boston. He made five appearances this preseason.
The former 2012 first-round selection averaged 4.3 points and 1.8 rebounds with OKC in 2014-15, memorably dropping 32 points and seven boards in the Thunder's second game of the season.
The Celtics, now with the dead contracts of Jones and Zoran Dragic, who were both acquired for second-round picks this summer, are over the salary cap and have $77.5 million booked in payroll this season.
Boston does have space to maneuver under the luxury tax. They were unfortunately unsuccessful in their attempts to find a suitable trade partner for Jones.
Opening Day starts this Wednesday; Boston's first game tips off at 7:30 PM Eastern Time as the C's host the Philadelphia 76ers at the TD Garden.