The salary cap could jump from $90MM in 2016/17 to as much as $105MM the year after, league sources tell Zach Lowe of Grantland.com. With all the buzz surrounding Kevin Durant, Lowe notes that the increase could give the Thunder another chance to add talent without going into the luxury tax. Although, he adds that giving Serge Ibaka a maximum salary contract on his next deal could limit their flexibility.
Here’s more from the Western Conference:
- The Thunder‘s injury woes continue as coach Scott Brooks informed reporters that Nick Collison is expected to miss at least 10 days with an ankle injury, Darnell Mayberry of The Oklahoman relays. Collison joins Durant, Ibaka and Enes Kanter on the injured list, Mayberry notes. “One thing I do know is our guys are going to continue to fight and rally and our crowd is going to continue to support our guys because they give effort,” Brooks said. “We’ve never, ever given up and felt sorry for ourselves. Our team’s going to continue to rally around each other and help each other fight through it. We’ve had some tough moments this year. That has never stopped us from competing, never stopped us from trying to improve.”
- Rockets players have missed a combined 137 games this season due to injury or illness thus far, Jonathan Feigen of The Houston Chronicle notes. The latest Houston player to sustain an injury is Terrence Jones who suffered a collapsed lung during Thursday night’s contest. Jones will be out of action indefinitely as a result of his injury, Feigen relays. “Guys have to step up,” coach Kevin McHale said. “I sure wish Kostas Papanikolaou [who has been out for 13 games with a sprained ankle] was ready to play, but he’s not ready to play, either. We just have to deal with it and go.“
- The Mavs have re-assigned Dwight Powell to the Texas Legends, their D-League affiliate, the team announced in a press release.