With the NBA’s 2017 trade deadline fast approaching, it’s worth taking a look at which teams around the league remain below the salary floor for the 2016/17 season. Each NBA club is required to spend at least 90% of the cap in each league year — if a team doesn’t meet that requirement, it will have to make up the difference at year’s end by paying it out to its players.
While teams will make up the shortfall at year’s end if they have to, it makes more sense to find a way to reach the floor in the coming weeks. It’s why multiple teams below the salary floor acquired – or re-acquired – Mo Williams earlier this month, as I explained last week. It’s also why some of these teams may get involve in deadline deals to take on unwanted salary in exchange for a future draft pick or another asset.
Last February, for instance, the Trail Blazers reached the salary floor after agreeing to take on Anderson Varejao‘s contract from Cleveland, giving the Cavaliers a significant trade exception and allowing the Cavs to substantially reduce their luxury tax bill. In return, Portland secured a first-round draft pick for 2018 that the team later turned into a first-round pick for 2017. So, in exchange for taking on a contract and paying some money that they would’ve been on the hook for anyway, the Blazers ended up with an extra first-round pick in a strong ’17 draft.
The teams listed below will likely be on the lookout for that sort of opportunity in the coming weeks, and some of them will also be active in taking a look at various players on 10-day contracts.
Here’s the full list of teams that remain below the salary floor ($84.729MM), along with their accompanying cap data:
Team salary: $76,507,540
Amount below salary floor: $8,221,460
Note: Quincy Acy‘s new two-year deal, which is expected to move the Nets about $1.7MM closer to the floor, is not yet included in this total.
Team salary: $76,986,092
Amount below salary floor: $7,742,908
Team salary: $77,117,054
Amount below salary floor: $7,611,946
Team salary: $80,498,192
Amount below salary floor: $4,230,808
Team salary: $80,921,006
Amount below salary floor: $3,807,994
Team salary: $81,427,199
Amount below salary floor: $3,301,801