Buyout was worth about $3 million

Updated: February 17, 2004, 5:46 PM ET
Associated Press

CHICAGO -- The Chicago Bulls waived guard Jay Williams on Tuesday, two weeks after reaching a contract buyout with the guard whose career is in jeopardy following a motorcycle accident.

Jay Williams

NBA rules require a player to be put on waivers after a team and the player make a settlement on their contract.

The buyout was worth about $3 million. Williams had two more years worth about $7.7 million left on his original deal.

"Jay's accident was tragic and unfortunate. We look forward to watching the progress of Jay's rehabilitation and remain hopeful he can someday rejoin our team. But at the same time this allows us roster flexibility as we move forward," Bulls general manager John Paxson said.

Williams was riding a new motorcycle last June 19 when the bike got away from him and slammed into a utility pole.

He severed a main nerve in his leg, fractured his pelvis and tore three of the four main ligaments in his left knee. He spent two weeks at a Chicago hospital before being transferred to Duke University Medical Center, where he has been rehabbing.

Williams, 22, led Duke to the national championship in 2001. He was drafted in the first round a year later by the Bulls with great expectations. He had his ups and downs as a rookie, before finally losing his starting spot. He averaged 9.5 points and 4.7 assists in 75 games as a rookie.

Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press