August 26, 2014

While We’re Waiting… Impending cap room and the Cavaliers

While We’re Waiting serves as the early morning gathering of WFNY-esque information for your viewing pleasure. Have something you think we should see? Send it to our tips email at tips@waitingfornextyear.com.

“If the season ended tomorrow, the Cleveland Cavaliers would owe Kyrie Irving, Tristan Thompson, Anderson Varejao, Dion Waiters, Tyler Zeller, and Alonzo Gee $28,079,120 in 2012-2013. They will almost certainly pick up C.J. Miles’ $2.25 million deal, and they will have two first round draft picks likely to make a combined $4 million or so. This comes out to a little over $34 million dollars. Given a salary cap around $60 million, the Cavaliers will have about $26 million dollars to spend. The salary floor will be 90% of the cap, or $54 million. In other words, the Cavaliers will likely have to take on $20 million dollars in salary. Cavaliers fans also know that Dan Gilbert is likely to be fine with the Cavaliers spending above the salary cap, as he has shown in the past a willingness to pay the luxury tax.

But the Cavaliers are far from the only team that will be under the cap this summer; at least 11 teams are on track in the status quo to be able to offer a max level contract to free agents. This, along with a quick glance at rosters around the league, where mediocrity abounds, will tell you that there is real demand for difference making players, and people have the money to go get them. The problem, then, is supply. The NBA is already skewed towards the top because of a limited amount of superstars available, and player preferences for attractive markets like Los Angeles. Add to that the current fad of rebuilding teams shunning free agency in favor of the draft and the low contracts of rookie deals, and you have a league with a few teams well over the cap with established stars, whether they play like it or not, and a lot of teams saving their gun powder for … well, I don’t know. Frankly, it is hard to blame teams in the latter group. Did spending on Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva keep the Pistons in contention the last few years? Or what about Washington, who has added Nene, Trevor Ariza, and Emeka Okafor and their considerable salaries, but still will have trouble making the playoffs this season.” [Zavac/Fear the Sword]

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“The Ohio State defense put together another positive performance in its near shutdown of Illinois. The Buckeye defense is on an upward trajectory based upon the same contributing factors—the return to health of key contributors, different personnel grouping, and slight tweaks in schemes—that continue to build upon each other in a virtuous cycle. While the Buckeye defense will be more tested in coming weeks, there is reason to believe that the Buckeye defense has improved in the second half of the season.” [Fulton/Eleven Warriors]

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Mid-season all-rookie honors for 3 Browns rookies. [Farrar/Shutdown Corner]

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I’ve called the Oklahoma City uniforms the worst in sports. There is a new alternate uniform. Well done. [News OK]

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“5. Ohio State Buckeyes. The Skinny: Few players boast an all-around game like Aaron Craft, the Buckeyes’ heady point guard who shot 50 percent from the field last year and plays lockdown defense. Between Craft and 6-foot-7 forward Deshaun Thomas (15.9 points per game), the Buckeyes have one of the best one-two punches in the nation after making the Final Four last year.

What to Look for: How does Ohio State replace Jared Sullinger? Getting back to the Final Four won’t be easy without Sullinger and William Buford, especially given how strong the Big Ten is, and we’ll get a couple good looks at just how good the Buckeyes before the New Year, as they play both Duke and Kansas. They’ll lean on Craft to become more of a scorer than he has needed to be in the past, and hope that veteran Lenzelle Smith can increase his offensive output on the outside and Amir Williams can become a more consistent threat in the post.” [Sports on Earth]

  • Dee P

    Incredibly jacked for the start of the Buckeyes basketball season. Most of it is due to the unknown. This team has a shot to be really, really good, or frustratingly mediocre. So many things to watch for, so many players to analyze how well they meet expectations and/or raise their level of play….great schedule on tap including a tremendous conference on paper. It is the perfect way to carry me through a long winter and into the lap of Tribe baseball season and the NFL Draft which has been an exciting part of the Browns for the past decade.

    So jacked up.

  • mgbode

    that salary floor is one of the reasons that Morey gave about the Harden trade. he didn’t specifically mention it, but it was pretty obvious with phrases like “need to spend money on difference makers and not role players”

    it’ll be interesting to see how many teams end up just signing the Kris Humphries of the world to ridiculous 2yr/$24mil contracts.

  • typo

    Cap room shmap room. Who’s signing with cleveland?

  • dwhit110

    The issue I had with that FTS article is where it talked about trading the Heat pic in a potential Wilson Chandler deal. It’s hard to move that pick because it’s so much more valuable in our hands than elsewhere.

    Remember we have the option, through the Sessions deal, to flip the Heat pick with the Lakers pick come draft time. I can’t imagine the Lakers being this bad all year, but you could be talking about going from like the 30th pick to the 22nd. That’s not nothing.

  • Dee P

    Kyrie and Waiters could have some intriguing pull on free agents.

  • typo

    Possibly, but it didn’t work with lebron.

  • mgbode

    we didn’t have cap room with LeBron other than the 1 window we wasted on Donyell and Hughes.

    so, yes, it didn’t work on Michael Redd w/ LeBron. but he spent the next few years injured and a shell of himself anyway (we would have dodged a bullet if we weren’t getting hit with the Hughes/Donyell bullets at the same time)

  • woofersus

    They weren’t here when Lebron left. The only guy here that could draw a free agent at the time was Lebron.