Players > Retired > Anthony Tolliver
Anthony Tolliver
PF - 6'8, 250lbs - 39 years old - 14 years of NBA experience
Retired - Retired after 2022 season
  • Birthdate: 06/01/1985
  • Drafted (NBA): Undrafted, 2007
  • Pre-draft team: Creighton
  • Country: USA
  • Hand: Right
  • Agent: -
25th September, 2007CBADrafted 16th overall in the 2007 CBA Draft by Butte Daredevils.
28th September, 2007NBASigned an unguaranteed one year minimum salary contract with Cleveland.
31st October, 2007NBAWaived by Cleveland.
28th November, 2007D-LeagueAcquired by Iowa Energy.
7th February, 2008D-LeagueWaived by Iowa Energy.
9th February, 2008GermanySigned for the remainder of the season with Eisbaren Bremerhaven.
23rd July, 2008NBASigned a partially guaranteed two year minimum salary contract with San Antonio.
2nd December, 2008D-LeagueAssigned by San Antonio to Austin Toros of the D-League.
19th December, 2008D-LeagueRecalled by San Antonio from Austin Toros of the D-League.
7th January, 2009NBAWaived by San Antonio.
14th January, 2009D-LeagueAcquired by Iowa Energy.
21st January, 2009NBASigned a 10 day contract with New Orleans.
31st January, 2009D-LeagueDesignated as a returning player by Iowa Energy.
24th February, 2009D-LeagueLeft Iowa Energy.
26th February, 2009TurkeySigned for the remainder of the season with Galatasaray.
28th September, 2009NBASigned an unguaranteed one year minimum salary contract with Miami.
20th October, 2009NBAWaived by Miami.
1st November, 2009D-LeagueDesignated as a returning player by Iowa Energy.
6th November, 2009D-LeagueAs a part of a three team deal, traded by Iowa Energy to Idaho Stampede in exchange for Earl Barron from Los Angeles D-Fenders.
17th December, 2009NBASigned an unguaranteed minimum salary contract for the remainder of the season with Portland.
29th December, 2009NBAWaived by Portland.
31st December, 2009D-LeagueDesignated as a returning player by Idaho Stampede.
17th January, 2010NBASigned a 10 day contract with Golden State.
27th January, 2010NBASigned a second 10 day contract with Golden State.
6th February, 2010NBASigned a guaranteed minimum salary contract for the remainder of the season with Golden State.
6th August, 2010NBASigned a two year, $4.25 million contract with Minnesota.
25th September, 2012NBASigned an unguaranteed one year minimum salary contract with Atlanta.
19th August, 2013NBASigned a guaranteed one year minimum salary contract with Charlotte.
20th July, 2014NBASigned a partially guaranteed two year, $6 million contract with Phoenix.
24th December, 2014NBATraded by Phoenix to Detroit in exchange for Tony Mitchell.
9th July, 2016NBASigned a partially guaranteed two year, $16 million contract with Sacramento.
1st June, 2017NBAWaived by Sacramento.
14th July, 2017NBASigned a one year, $3.29 million contract with Detroit,
7th July, 2018NBASigned a one year, $5.75 million contract with Minnesota.
Career Moves
2003 - 2007Creighton (NCAA)
July 2007Miami Heat (Summer League)
September 2007 - October 2007Cleveland Cavaliers (NBA)
November 2007 - February 2008Iowa Energy (D-League)
February 2008 - June 2008Bremerhaven (Germany)
July 2008San Antonio Spurs (Summer League)
July 2008 - January 2009San Antonio Spurs (NBA)
January 2009Iowa Energy (D-League)
January 2009New Orleans Hornets (NBA)
January 2009 - February 2009Iowa Energy (D-League)
February 2009 - June 2009Galatasaray (Turkey)
July 2009New Orleans Hornets (Summer League)
September 2009 - October 2009Miami Heat (NBA)
November 2009Iowa Energy (D-League)
November 2009 - December 2009Idaho Stampede (D-League)
December 2009Portland Trail Blazers (NBA)
December 2009 - January 2010Idaho Stampede (D-League)
January 2010 - June 2010Golden State Warriors (NBA)
August 2010 - June 2012Minnesota Timberwolves (NBA)
September 2012 - June 2013Atlanta Hawks (NBA)
August 2013 - June 2014Charlotte Bobcats
July 2014 - December 2014Phoenix Suns (NBA)
December 2014 - June 2016Detroit Pistons (NBA)
July 2016 - June 2017Sacramento Kings (NBA)
July 2017 - June 2018Detroit Pistons (NBA)
July 2018 - presentMinnesota Timberwolves (NBA)
Articles about Anthony Tolliver

June 29, 2018

Anthony Tolliver
SF/PF - 6’8, 240lbs - 33 years old - 11 years of experience

For a decade now, Anthony Tolliver has been the league’s best purveyor of Tollyball. Without ever playing a clear-cut position, without ever doing much to flank the ever-present threat of the three-point jump shot, and without ever being a decent rebounder, Tolliver has made a career out of being in the right place offensively and being in every place defensively.

“Three-and-D specialist” is kind of an overused simplified version of what NBA teams look for in their non-star players, its overusage not helped by the fact that people occasionally release 800+ page NBA strategy documents that use the term three million times. It is usually used in descriptions of wing players. Tolliver is not a wing; he gets some minutes at small forward, but chasing around shooters is not the one for him.

Regardless of his positional identity, though, Tolliver is absolutely a three-and-D player. His offensive game is sneaking open, hitting 40%+ of his catch-and-shoot three-pointers (on a decent volume), setting screens and not getting in the way. And defensively, he gets everywhere, or as everywhere as a fairly laterally slow player who wins few possessions can be. Tolliver helps all around the court, takes a good number of charges, contests without the stocks stats to back it up, and is a big intangible piece of any decent defensive unit. Or, as was also the case this season, some bad ones.

At the age of 33, expect there to be a bidding war for Anthony Tolliver this summer. He really does know what to do out there.

Player Plan: Expiring $3.29 million salary. Money is drying up around the league, but Tolliver will surely command at least a taxpayer’s MLE somewhere, so Detroit likely cannot keep him.

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June 11, 2013

After going undrafted out of Creighton in 2007, Anthony Tolliver played in summer league for the Miami Heat, and was granted the honour of being the 16th overall pick in the 2007 Continental Basketball Association draft. These things eventually parlayed themselves into a training camp contract with the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Tolliver's contract with Cleveland was a typical 'summer' (read as 'training camp') contract. It was a fully unguaranteed rookie minimum salary contract, which, in the 2007/08 season, was worth $427,163. Tolliver was one of several camp signings for the Cavaliers that season - alongside Noel Felix, Chet Mason, Hassan Adams, Darius Rice, and a re-signed Dwayne Jones - and was an outside shot to make the roster based purely on the numbers game alone.

Concurrent with these moves, Cleveland was embroiled in the long-since-forgotten-about holdouts of Anderson Varejao and Sasha Pavlovic. Both restricted free agents out of contract that summer, both unhappy with Cleveland's best offer, and yet both seemingly unable to get more on the market, the two held out of training camp, waiting for enormous deals that never came. From memory, Pavlovic wanted roughly six years and $40 million, while Varejao wanted $10 million per annum.

The two held out all through the free agency period, all through training camp, all through preseason, and into the regular season. It is precisely because of this that Tolliver, as well as Demetris Nichols, made the Cavaliers roster that season. Pavlovic was the first to crack - he agreed to re-sign to a partially guaranteed three year $13,696,250 contract that he was waived after only two years of. He signed this contract on October 31st 2007, the second day of the regular season. And when he did so, Tolliver was waived to open up a roster spot.

It seemed mostly innocuous that Tolliver earned a few dollars for his brief stint with the Cavs that season. There are 170 days in an NBA regular season, and players unguaranteed for a lack of skill are paid per diem for each day they are on the roster, including partial days and time on waivers (which, at the time, was 48 hours not including weekends). For his one day of work, then - a day on which he didn't even make the active list - Tolliver received four days of pay, $10,051 (which is $427,163 / 170 * 4). Similarly, all three of Adams, Felix and Rice received $8,088 - they were waived suitably late that their two days on waivers earned them two days of pay.

However, the difference between Tolliver's situation and that of the other trio is that day-and-a-bit he spent on the roster. The amount a player gets in a minimum salary contract differs based on his number of years of experience, but 'years of experience' is itself something of a misnomer. To gain a year of experience, a player need spend only one day of the regular season on a team's roster, and it doesn't even need to be on the active list. The one-and-a-bit days Tolliver spent, then, was enough to count as a full year of experience. And the by-product of that has been increased salaries ever since.

Tolliver didn't sign in the NBA again in the 2007-08 season, splitting his remaining time between the D-League and the German league. But the following July, Tolliver signed a two year minimum salary contract with the San Antonio Spurs, including a $200,000 guarantee in the first season. He made the regular season roster, and stuck with the time right up until January, whereupon he was waived in advance of the league-wide contract guarantee date of January 10th. In that time, Tolliver earned $309,719, 74/170ths of his one year veteran minimum salary of $711,517. Later that season, Tolliver signed a ten day contract with the New Orleans Hornets, earning him a further $41,853 (10/170ths), for a total NBA salary that season of $351,573. Had he not spent that time with the Cavaliers the previous season, he would have been earning only a similarly prorated of the rookie minimum of $442,114, which would have been $218,456.

This pattern continues into future seasons, too. In the 2009/10 season, Tolliver signed a prorated minimum salary contract with the Portland Trail Blazers that paid him $72,838, followed by two ten day contracts with the Golden State Warriors at $48,559 a piece, and finally ending in a rest-of-the-season contract with them that paid an extra $330,199 for a total of $500,155. Had he been earning the one year veteran minimum of $736,420 instead of the two year veteran one of $825,497, that amount would only have been $446,184. And were it not for the Cavaliers stint five years ago, the minimum salary that Tolliver received from the Atlanta Hawks this season would have been worth only $915,852 instead of the $992,680 he wound up getting. Including the per diem he got directly from Cleveland, Tolliver wound up pulling in $1,854,459 in NBA salary across those four seasons, instead of the $1,580,492 over three he would have done.

And he owes it all to Sasha Pavlovic's delusions of grandeur.

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July 30, 2010

Anthony Tolliver - Tolliver was an undersized rebounding centre in college who knew he needed to develop an outside shot to make it at the next level, and now that he's done so, it's the vast majority of what he does offensively. He's not a bad defender, either, albeit on comparably face-up power forwards and not when defending the post.

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June 14, 2010

Anthony Tolliver - If the Bulls are still not convinced that they have satisfactorily alleviated their outside shooting concerns, then help does not necessarily have to be found solely in the backcourt. Tolliver was an undersized rebounding centre in college who knew he needed to develop an outside shot to make it at the next level, and now that he's done so, it's the vast majority of what he does offensively. He's not a bad defender, either, and if Golden State opts to keep him, Chicago could always turn to.......

Matt Bonner ......who is much the same. But funnier.

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December 19, 2009

After suffering their ten millionth injury, the Portland Trail Blazers were granted a roster exemption by the NBA, enabling them to sign a 16th player. They used it to sign Anthony Tolliver from the Idaho Stampede, who was arguably the best big man in the D-League. If you can really call him a big man, that is.

Tolliver played as an undersized centre in college, but is somewhat undersized for even the power forward position in the NBA, let alone centre. To counter this, Tolliver has developed a good outside jumpshot throughout his professional career, and it is now his calling card. Tolliver played some for the Spurs last season, but his jumpshot picked a bad month for a vacation, and he was waived before the contract guarantee date. He spent the rest of the year split between the D-League and Turkey.

I don't know why the Blazers felt that they needed a slightly small face-up power forward particularly badly, given that two of their healthy nine players are Dante Cunningham and Juwan Howard, who are much the same player if with slightly less jumpshot range. Some more conventional size might have been a better option for a team that currently only has Joel Przybilla at centre, in which ranks last in the NBA in points in the paint. But the Blazers also worked out Chris Richard and Courtney Sims for the spot, and yet clearly decided that Tolliver was the best. And BPA is almost always a good policy.

Inevitably, though, it will all be for nought, and Tolliver himself will probably get some kind of compression injury from sitting on the bench for so long. Such has been the Blazers's year.

(By the way, if any Blazers fans were wondering if Tolliver was eligible to be re-assigned to the D-League at any point; he isn't. Tolliver was on the Cavaliers roster for the first 36 hours of the 2007/08 season, and that tiny amount is enough to count as a year of NBA experience, even though he didn't play a single minute. Therefore, A-Toll has two years of NBA experience, which makes him ineligible for an already impossibly unlikely assignment. The extra year of experience also means he's going to get paid more, so that's good.)

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