Felder, a 5-foot-10-inch guard, played his college ball at the University of Oakland where he was a dynamic scorer and surprisingly adept defender despite his lack of size. He was the 54th pick from the 2016 draft, and in his rookie season with the Cavaliers averaged four points per game on 39.2 percent from the field in limited playing time.
He actually played really well in the developmental league last season:
Kay Felder interesting to me. Bad in the NBA but only played 386 mins. Great G League stats, got to the line a ton, nice low-risk flier. pic.twitter.com/VBh6QrnYVO— Stephen Noh (@StephNoh) October 16, 2017
Felder was waived by the Atlanta Hawks, who had just acquired him Saturday in a salary-dump move by Cleveland that also included Richard Jefferson.
By virtue of the claim, the Bulls assume Felder’s contract. That’s $456,529 guaranteed this year, becoming fully-guaranteed for $1.3m on January 10th. There’s then a team option for the following season.
Felder’s addition creates an interesting ripple effect through the Chicago Bulls rotation. The Bulls slated Ryan Arcidiacono to back up Jerian Grant at point guard until Kris Dunn returned from his finger injury. Does Felder immediately move ahead of Arcidiacono on the depth chart and then slip into the third point guard spot once Dunn returns?
The Bulls also had to make some roster cuts to accommodate the addition of Felder since teams can only field 15 players on the roster (not including the 2-way contract players) once the regular season begins. Gone are Jarell Eddie and Diamond Stone. Stone actually had a $50k partial guarantee himself that will be paid by the Bulls if he’s unclaimed. Eddie famously (?) hit a game-winner for the Bulls this preseason.
If Tom Thibodeau was still around, a diminutive third-string point guard like Felder would become a dynamic scorer or reject ex-teammate Lebron James or something crazy like that. But under Hoiberg, who knows?