Deadline Deals Explained Financially

A few weeks ago, I broke down some of the rules and regulations on trades in the new Collective Bargaining Agreement. Now that the trade deadline has passed and we've seen a number of deals consummated, it's worth a look back to see how those trade rules applied to this week's moves.

As we run through the trades, explaining the financial details for each team, keep in mind that each club involved in a deal can break down a trade in different ways. Jeff Kramer of Storytellers Contracts explained this splendidly in a piece on this week's Andrew Bogut/Monta Ellis trade for Blazer's Edge. Although the total salaries going each way matched up almost perfectly, the Bucks broke down the move into two separate trades, while the Warriors viewed it as three separate transactions. This way, each team was able to acquire a sizeable traded player exception that wouldn't have been possible by viewing the trade as a single, simultaneous transaction.

For more clarification on this point, check out Kramer's piece, revisit Larry Coon's CBA FAQ, and feel free to ask questions in the comments section of this post. Also, be sure to check out our list of outstanding traded player exceptions, which has been updated to reflect all the info below.

Here's the complete breakdown of this week's trades:

Bucks trade Andrew Bogut and Stephen Jackson to the Warriors for Monta Ellis, Ekpe Udoh, and Kwame Brown


  • Bogut ($12MM) for Ellis ($11MM) and Udoh ($3.29MM). As a nontaxpayer, the Bucks could have absorbed up to $17MM (100% of Bogut's salary + $5MM) in a simultaneous deal for Bogut, so the combined $14.29MM fits comfortably.
  • Jackson ($9.26MM) for Brown ($6.75MM). This segment of the deal is non-simultaneous, meaning the Bucks received a traded player exception for the difference between the two salaries ($2,506,500). They'll have a year to use it.


  • Ellis ($11MM) for Bogut ($12MM). 100% of Ellis' salary + $5MM easily absorbs Bogut's salary.
  • Brown ($6.75MM) for Jackson ($9.26MM). In this case, the Warriors could take up to 150% of Brown's salary, which would be $10MM+.
  • Because Udoh is essentially going to the Bucks for nothing, from Golden State's perspective, the Warriors receive a traded player exception worth Uodh's cap figure ($3,294,960).

Grizzlies trade Sam Young to the 76ers for the rights to 2005 second-round pick Ricky Sanchez


  • By sending out Young and not receiving salary in return, the Grizzlies created a traded player exception worth Young's cap figure ($947,800).


  • The Sixers used a portion of the $2,721,255 trade exception they received by dealing Marreese Speights. After absorbing Young's salary, Philadelphia has $1,773,455 remaining on that exception.

Raptors trade Leandro Barbosa to the Pacers for a second-round pick and cash considerations


  • Not taking back any salary for Barbosa means the Raptors landed a $7.6MM traded player exception in the deal. The move took Toronto's 2011/12 cap figure below the minimum, so perhaps the cash considerations the Raps received will help them reach that salary floor.


  • Indiana's huge excess of cap room was more than enough to absorb Barbosa's $7.6MM salary. The Pacers are still nearly $7MM below the cap.

Trail Blazers trade Gerald Wallace to Nets for Mehmet Okur, Shawne Williams, and a first-round pick


  • Wallace ($9.5MM) for Okur ($10.89MM) and Williams ($3MM). The Blazers' could have absorbed up to $14.25 in total salary for Wallace's deal (150% of $9.5MM), so the combined $13.89MM of the two Nets fits.


  • Okur ($10.89MM) for Wallace ($9.5MM). The Nets create a trade exception worth the difference in salaries ($1.39MM) via this non-simultaneous deal.
  • Williams is essentially headed to Portland for nothing, so another $3MM trade exception is created using his 2011/12 cap figure.

Cavaliers trade Ramon Sessions and Christian Eyenga to Lakers for Luke Walton, Jason Kapono, and a first-round pick


  • Sessions ($4.26MM) for Walton ($5.97MM) and Kapono ($854,389). Walton's 7.5% trade kicker increased his cap figure for this year and next, but Sessions's $4.26MM figure can still easily absorb his salary using the 150% rule. Because Kapono is earning the veteran's minimum, his cap figure can be added to the swap without adhering to the 150% rule.
  • Cleveland earns a trade exception worth Eyenga's salary ($1,097,520).


  • Walton ($5.68MM) for Sessions ($4.26MM) and Eyenga ($1.1MM). The Lakers use Walton's pre-kicker cap figure for salary-matching purposes. Since the gap between Walton's outgoing salary and the combined incoming salaries is so small, no trade exception is created here.
  • However, the Lakers do receive a small trade exception for Kapono — it's worth $854,389.

Warriors trade Stephen Jackson to Spurs for Richard Jefferson, T.J. Ford and a first-round pick


  • Jackson ($9.26MM) for Jefferson ($9.28MM) and Ford ($854,389). Jackson's and Jefferson's salaries match up almost perfectly, while Ford, who recently retired, is a throw-in to reduce the Spurs' luxury tax bill.


  • Jefferson ($9.28MM) for Jackson ($9.26MM). The difference between these two salaries is minuscule enough that no trade exception is created.
  • Like the Lakers with Kapono, the Spurs do receive a small ($854,389) exception for Ford.

Trail Blazers trade Marcus Camby to the Rockets for Hasheem Thabeet, Jonny Flynn, and a second-round pick


  • Camby ($11.23) for Thabeet ($5.13MM) and Flynn ($3.41MM). The gap in salaries here creates a modest traded player exception for Portland. It'll be worth $2,684,810.


  • Thabeet ($5.13MM) and Flynn ($3.41MM) for Camby ($11.23MM). 150% of Thabeet's and Flynn's combined salaries is $12.81MM, so Camby fits in with room to spare.

Lakers trade Derek Fisher and a first-round pick to the Rockets for Jordan Hill


  • Fisher ($3.4MM) for Hill ($2.86MM). The Lakers create a trade exception here, worth the difference between the two salaries ($544,340). It's so tiny it almost certainly won't be used though.


  • Hill ($2.86MM) for Fisher ($3.4MM). Another straightforward deal for the Rockets, as 150% of Hill's cap figure is enough to absorb Fisher's salary.

The Wizards acquire Nene from the Nuggets and Brian Cook and a second-round pick from the Clippers; the Clippers acquire Nick Young from the Wizards; the Nuggets acquire JaVale McGee and Ronny Turiaf from the Wizards


  • Turiaf ($4.36MM), Young ($3.7MM), and McGee ($2.46MM) for Nene ($13MM). The combined outgoing salaries for Washington total $10,518,257, so the Wizards fit in Nene's figure using the 100% + $5MM rule. They could have absorbed up to about $15.5MM.


  • Young's $3.7MM salary is absorbed using the $3.8MM trade exception L.A. acquired for Eric Gordon in the Chris Paul blockbuster. The amount remaining on that exception is small enough to be irrelevant going forward.
  • Because Young is their only incoming player, the Clippers send out Cook for nothing, essentially, earning them a trade exception worth $1,223,166.


  • The Nuggets neatly absorb both Turiaf's $4.36MM and McGee's $2.46MM into their $7MM Raymond Felton trade exception. Like the Clippers, they're using enough of the exception that the remainder is essentially worthless.
  • So, for the second straight deadline, Denver receives a massive trade exception — last year it was for Carmelo Anthony's $17MM+ salary, while this year it's worth $13MM for Nene.

Note: Huge hat tip to Storytellers Contracts for contract details.


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