You’ve seen the NBA‘s best salary-cap situations heading into this summer’s free-agency extravaganza. Now we must slog through the worst.
Brace yourselves. This will be a messy crash course in just how friggin’ strapped most of the league is for cash. Bring your goggles. Put on your ponchos. The first 700 rows of audience members are going to get sopping wet.
Around two-thirds of the Association will be capped out as of now. And that paves the way for some harrowing bottom-line estimates.
So many franchises are on the edge of luxury-tax territory. A select few have left that $123 million threshold in the dust and are hoping against hope they can avoid a $150-million-before-taxes roster. This list will rank teams based on their increasing distance from the non-taxpayer’s mid-level exception.
Remember: Salary-cap projections are fluid. Free-agent departures and talent dumps will invariably shake up this pecking order. These forecasts are not gospel. They’re predictive snapshots of the NBA’s steepest, starkest, oft-darkest payrolls.