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NBA AM: Who’s Got Cap Cash?

NBA rosters are taking shape as training camp open at the end of the month, so who still has cap space to spend?… Who might have cap space next summer… T-Mac’s return? Unlikely.

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Who’s Got Cash?:  With more and more teams fleshing out their camp rosters, the salary cap picture is taking shape.

Here is a look at the current cap situation for each team. You can click on the team name for details about each team.

Speaking Of The Cap:  The 2014-2015 salary cap is set at $63.065 million. The estimates for the cap in 2015-2016 put the line somewhere closer to $66 million. With that in mind, here is a look at a best case (a team clears all it reasonably could) and a worst case (keeping all its options) for teams that could have cap space next summer.

Team Committed Best Case Inclusive Worst Case
Philadelphia $4,626,960 $61,373,040 $25,965,542 $40,034,458
Phoenix $17,294,087 $48,705,913 $42,698,799 $23,301,201
Portland $13,235,750 $52,764,250 $43,656,662 $22,343,338
San Antonio $34,159,326 $31,840,674 $43,775,289 $22,224,711
Orlando $14,870,429 $51,129,571 $45,109,736 $20,890,264
Memphis $41,113,597 $24,886,403 $45,588,397 $20,411,603
Atlanta $39,451,985 $26,548,015 $45,953,186 $20,046,814
LA Lakers $35,075,659 $30,924,341 $47,002,668 $18,997,332
New York $31,412,871 $34,587,129 $47,113,550 $18,886,450
Detroit $31,959,556 $34,040,444 $49,747,793 $16,252,207
Toronto $40,834,675 $25,165,325 $49,894,133 $16,105,867
Dallas $28,695,556 $37,304,444 $50,457,790 $15,542,210
Sacramento $37,589,979 $28,410,021 $52,891,514 $13,108,486
Boston $23,017,072 $42,982,928 $52,972,979 $13,027,021
Milwaukee $41,952,499 $24,047,501 $59,200,332 $6,799,668
New Orleans $29,830,093 $36,169,907 $59,344,392 $6,655,608
Utah $36,535,731 $29,464,269 $63,318,542 $2,681,458
Charlotte $22,684,100 $43,315,900 $63,538,962 $2,461,038
Minnesota $27,092,040 $38,907,960 $64,675,829 $1,324,171
Houston $51,117,128 $14,882,872 $65,723,359 $276,641
Chicago $58,624,322 $7,375,678 $66,448,323 ($448,323)
Oklahoma City $55,007,156 $10,992,844 $66,792,345 ($792,345)
LA Clipper $57,614,826 $8,385,174 $67,755,231 ($1,755,231)
Indiana $34,663,831 $31,336,169 $69,100,551 ($3,100,551)
Washington $52,122,841 $13,877,159 $70,272,078 ($4,272,078)
Denver $47,006,700 $18,993,300 $73,892,492 ($7,892,492)
Miami $41,185,835 $24,814,165 $76,863,379 ($10,863,379)
Golden State $56,118,647 $9,881,353 $77,913,198 ($11,913,198)
Cleveland $16,345,059 $49,654,941 $83,940,804 ($17,940,804)
Brooklyn $55,663,173 $10,336,827 $85,827,015 ($19,827,015)

Keep in mind the “likely space” will vary based on how each team deals with their own free agents. Portland for example has LaMarcus Aldridge, Robin Lopez and Wes Mathews hitting free agency, all three will carry cap holds of $17.69 million, $9.187 million and $10.868 million respectively.

When you see a team with monster space possible, you may want to look at who their free agents are (click on the team name in the chart in the top section).

The other thing to keep in mind about space next summer, is that the salary cap could see a massive jump in July of 2016, when the cap could go as high as $77-$80 million and the free agent pool in 2016 is far deeper.

A Comeback For McGrady?:  There were reports Tuesday suggesting that longtime NBA veteran Tracy McGrady, who played his last full NBA season in 2011-2012 season for the Atlanta Hawks, was working out with Lakers guard Kobe Bryant and pondering a comeback.

While everyone is entitled to change their mind, McGrady spoke with Basketball Insiders in early August, right around the time he was said to have been working out with Kobe, and said he really wasn’t considering the NBA again. McGrady’s stance wasn’t that he didn’t think he could play, saying his body was in great shape and that he felt as good physically as he has in years, but that he just didn’t think he could handle all the other stuff that is required to get back into NBA shape.

He admitted as much to Yahoo Sports in an e-mail, saying “The comeback will not happen, unless I have the drive whenever I get back,” McGrady told Yahoo in the email.

McGrady is committed to a lucrative basketball tour in China, which would keep him out of training camp in the NBA, which makes a comeback even more unlikely.

McGrady played a game versus the college “counselors” during the Nations tournament, and admitted he hadn’t played basketball in months, and frankly it showed on the floor.

Here is the interview McGrady did with us, in which he was pretty clear that he wasn’t considering a comeback.


McGrady turned 35 this summer, so he’s not that far over the hill to make a comeback unrealistic, especially for the right team.

The situation around McGrady seems a little unrealistic to expect a team to go all in on McGrady. He averaged 9.4 points per game in the 24 games he played in New York in 2009-2010, he logged 72 games in Detroit averaging eight points per game and his final NBA season in Atlanta yielded 5.3 points per game in the 52 games he logged time.

McGrady was unable to secure a guaranteed contract in 2012-2013 and spent that season in China with the Qingdao Eagles; he joined the San Antonio Spurs for a postseason run and logged action in a few games during their path to the Finals.

Everyone is entitled to change their mind, but McGrady returning to the NBA doesn’t seem likely, although crazier things have happened.

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Steve Kyler is the Editor and Publisher of Basketball Insiders and has covered the NBA and basketball for the last 17 seasons.

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