NBA to scale back the projected 2020-2021 salary cap increase

NomarsFool

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How does it work with max contracts and the % of the cap? Is it a % of the cap that year, or is a % of the cap whatever it happens to be in future years? In other words, do you sign a contract with an absolute salary, or does the contract say you always get 30% of the cap?
 

BaseballJones

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Oct 1, 2015
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Ok...so how does this likely impact the Celtics specifically? Yes, I know they'll have less money to spend, obviously. I mean someone with a good working knowledge of their current and future cap situations...can you give us some likely impact?
 

wade boggs chicken dinner

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How does it work with max contracts and the % of the cap? Is it a % of the cap that year, or is a % of the cap whatever it happens to be in future years? In other words, do you sign a contract with an absolute salary, or does the contract say you always get 30% of the cap?
I believe the contract starts with the % of salary cap and then increases from there according to set percentages.

Here's a tweet that explains the max salaries starting point with a $113M cap: View: https://twitter.com/jgsiegel/status/1222765926619209729?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fcdn.embedly.com%2Fwidgets%2Fmedia.html%3Ftype%3Dtext%252Fhtml%26key%3D3ce26dc7e3454db5820ba084d28b4935%26schema%3Dtwitter%26url%3Dhttps%253A%2F%2Ftwitter.com%2Fjgsiegel%2Fstatus%2F1222765926619209729%26image%3Dhttps%253A%2F%2Fi.embed.ly%2F1%2Fimage%253Furl%253Dhttps%25253A%25252F%25252Fpbs.twimg.com%25252Fprofile_images%25252F733562554203570176%25252F3ZrB7V9a_400x400.jpg%2526key%253D3ce26dc7e3454db5820ba084d28b4935


"Projected 2020 cap space teams and amounts if the cap is $113M:
Atlanta: 66.81M
Charlotte: 22.69M
Cleveland: 22.74M
Memphis: 48.03M
New York: 34.93M

Maximum salaries would start at 28.25M, 33.90M, and 39.55M for the various experience levels."
 

InstaFace

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Sep 27, 2016
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Ok...so how does this likely impact the Celtics specifically? Yes, I know they'll have less money to spend, obviously. I mean someone with a good working knowledge of their current and future cap situations...can you give us some likely impact?
Here's our contracts page.

Jaylen Brown's extension kicks in next year, taking him from $6.5 to $23.0. Tatum also goes from $7.8 to $9.9. If Hayward and Kanter both opt in but we decline Semi's option, we're at $137.2, which would have us riiiiiiight up against the luxury tax line. And that's before any new draft picks.

- From there, we could save by cutting or trading Javonte Green ($1.5 only partially guaranteed) but would probably not decide that Daniel Theis needed to go ($5.0)
- I'd assume Wanamaker, a pending UFA, would not be re-signed, and we'd wager on Romeo or a cheap veteran to be our 3rd rotation guard.
- We are currently projected to have 5 draft picks: #17 MEM (1-6 protected), #23 BOS 1R, #30 MIL, #43 BKN, and #53 BOS 2R. The 120% cap holds for the 3 first-rounders would result in a provisional cap hold of ($3.1 + $2.4 + $1.7) * 120% = $8.6M. If they are eventually signed to their rough slot values that'd drop to ~$7.2 but that's still a lot for us.
- if Hayward opts out, we're actually under the cap but not usefully so, we wouldn't have a max slot to use or anything, the only advantage would be to have the full mid-level. And any space would soon be taken up by Tatum's extension after next year, so you wouldn't expect Ainge to strongly pursue a sign-and-trade or something to retain that expenditure, given how much luxury tax that would immediately create.

We paid tax on last year's payroll (a mere $3.4M, vs say the Thunder's $61.6M), but appear to be on pace to be under the tax this year. So if we go into the tax again with the next season, we'll be living a bit dangerously with the repeater penalty (Which kicks in if you paid tax in 3 of the 4 previous seasons). For the moment, though, we will pay to the league an additional $1.50 for every $1 of the first $5M over the tax, $1.75 for the next $5M, then $2.50 and $3.25 for the subsequent $5M chunks. Repeaters add $1 to each of those factors. If nothing dramatic happens to the payroll (Hayward stays for next year and then leaves, Tatum gets maxed), we'll be minor taxpayers in 2021-2022.
 

OurF'ingCity

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Apr 22, 2016
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Yeah, can we change the thread title? It suggests that the salary cap itself is going to be lower next year, not that the projection is very slightly lower than what it was in September.

Edit: not blaming the OP because the ESPN headline in woj's tweet is also highly misleading.
 

Sprowl

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Jun 27, 2006
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Yeah, can we change the thread title? It suggests that the salary cap itself is going to be lower next year, not that the projection is very slightly lower than what it was in September.

Edit: not blaming the OP because the ESPN headline in woj's tweet is also highly misleading.
Title changed.
 

benhogan

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Trade deadline moves have cost potential FA this summer as Memphis, Atlanta, Cavs took on salary


The Broad Picture
While $400 million may seem like a lot for new additions in a summer where far fewer players will hit free agency than last summer, it will be an absolutely brutal market for players who want to make more than $10 million. As recently as January, I projected eight teams would use cap space this summer and amazingly that number is actually even lower now. While a few other franchises could clear functional space if desired, only seven look like they will use cap space this summer: the Hawks, Knicks, Pistons, Heat, Suns, Hornets and Trail Blazers, a group that could easily shrink if Phoenix chooses to retain Dario Saric or Portland keeps Trevor Ariza’s $12.8 million.

However, that is only the start of what must be giving agents cold sweats. There are no double max teams and only the Hawks, Knicks and Pistons look likely to have enough wiggle room to sign a 7-9 year player to a 30 percent max contract, though the Heat and possibly Hornets could join them with smaller moves. That gets even more treacherous because Pat Riley has made it abundantly clear that he prioritizes 2021 cap space, meaning Miami will presumably not use its money to sign players for more than one season unless it is an incredibly team-friendly contract. The same could be true for the Knicks and potentially anyone other than the Trail Blazers, since extensions for Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum in 2021 makes their space use it or lose it.

As such, any free agents who feel they should make more than the $9.8 million Non-Taxpayer MLE for more than one season have extremely few suitors on the open market. That means teams with Bird rights, like the Thunder with Danilo Gallinari and Raptors with Marc Gasol and Serge Ibaka, wield significantly more power than usual with unrestricted free agents. That’s especially so since another avenue for those players to get paid is via sign-and-trade, but that needs to be worth doing from their current team’s perspective since otherwise they can just scuttle the deal by refusing to be a part of it. Do not be surprised to see some lucrative one-year contracts, especially if the Raptors are optimistic about their chances in 2021 free agency.

The other group that will get hit hard is pending restricted free agents. Brandon Ingram’s play this year likely generates enough leverage for him to be fine but Bogdan Bogdanovic, Jakob Poeltl, Dario Saric and Kris Dunn will have a much harder time leveraging offer sheets than they would have in other offseasons. Interestingly, that dynamic was partially created by so many of their peers agreeing to extensions, many of whom were likely scared of the potentially soft market they helped create. Gersson Rosas and the Timberwolves may be a major beneficiary of this dynamic even if new acquisitions Malik Beasley and Juancho Hernangomez raise their stock between now and July.

One note to end on: The lack of cap space around the league is scary for free agents but does not ensure a quiet offseason at all. Having a lot of teams operating between the salary cap and luxury tax opens up trade possibilities with so many players under contract, plus there will be strong incentives with front offices grinding to maximize 2021 cap space and potentially an open title picture, depending on how this season shakes out.

Instead, the lack of spending power for new additions changes the feel and structure of the summer, likely putting more focus on trades, which could lead to a more eventful draft night and/or a more gradual set of transactions in July since trades do not have to be jammed in the first few days like free agent signings. It will be an unusual summer but potentially an exciting one, even without big names on the open market.
 

jon abbey

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Do we have any idea what happens to next year's cap if the NBA decides they need to play games with no crowds? Is next year locked already and the revenue drop would go on the year after that?

Edit: LeBron has an opinion:

"“We play games without the fans? Nah, that’s impossible,” James said. “I ain’t playing if I ain’t got the fans in the crowd. That’s who I play for. I play for my teammates, and I play for the fans. That’s what it’s all about. So if I show up to an arena and there ain’t no fans in there, I ain’t playing. They can do what they want to do.”"

https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2020/mar/07/nba-games-coronavirus-lebron-james?CMP=share_btn_tw
 

tims4wins

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Jul 15, 2005
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Do we have any idea what happens to next year's cap if the NBA decides they need to play games with no crowds? Is next year locked already and the revenue drop would go on the year after that?

Edit: LeBron has an opinion:

"“We play games without the fans? Nah, that’s impossible,” James said. “I ain’t playing if I ain’t got the fans in the crowd. That’s who I play for. I play for my teammates, and I play for the fans. That’s what it’s all about. So if I show up to an arena and there ain’t no fans in there, I ain’t playing. They can do what they want to do.”"

https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2020/mar/07/nba-games-coronavirus-lebron-james?CMP=share_btn_tw
As much as I sports hate LeBron that’s a fantastic quote.
 

jon abbey

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Still curious about how this is going to affect revenues and presumably the cap.
 

lovegtm

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Still curious about how this is going to affect revenues and presumably the cap.
Keith Smith (@KeithSmithNBA) Tweeted:
Talked to a couple of NBA front office people this week and they both said versions of "Started the year working on a lower cap due to the situation with China. Ending the year working on lower cap projections due to coronavirus."

Both said this year has been unlike any other.

View: https://twitter.com/KeithSmithNBA/status/1237772992173793280?s=20