At this point in the Bobcats' success cycle, with so many moving uncertainties lying ahead, it might be time to consider alternative roster-building strategies beyond trading for superstars. That is to say, as of now, Erick Dampier has FAR more value to the Cats as a trade chip, then a waive-able contract, than he does as an actual flesh and blood center. Should the Cats be unable to trade him, they should definitely waive him, save both the luxury tax money and his salary, and take their chances with Boris Diaw and a parade of dumpster dive finds at center.
That also applies to PG, where D.J. Augustin and Shaun Livingston, though interesting, and begging for a chance to prove themselves, have not actually shown that they can be a starting-quality point guard for a full NBA season. (If only we could combine their talents.)
However, we haven't heard anything about trawling for talent at either position, even though the talent's out there. Leave trades out of this. Assume we're going to dump Dampier. Which minimum-salary players should the Cats pursue?
First up, if he'll command only the minimum, I'd give Delonte West every opportunity to win the starting PG job in a three-way competition with Augustin and Livingston. In many ways, I see his game as a poor man's Kirk Hinrich. Personal issues matter when they affect the team's business, but West's well-publicized issues didn't necessarily affect the Cavaliers. After all, their chemistry was fantastic, thanks to that cure-all: winning.
Second, at big man, Josh Boone is a defense-oriented big man still in his mid-20s. He sucks at scoring, but everyone else on our squad scores, so his ability to patrol the lane and grab boards would complement the rest of the guys already on the roster.