The NBA salary cap will rise 11% to an all-time high of $70 million for the 2015–2016 season, the league announced on Wednesday. The tax level will rise 10.3% to $84.740 million.
The salary cap for the 2014–2015 season was $63.065 million, previously the highest ever.
The minimum team salary, set at 90% of the salary cap, will be $63 million for 2015–2016.
Maximum salaries for 2015–2016 will be: $16,407,500 for players with zero to six years of service; $19,689,000 for players with seven to 10 years; and $22,970,500 for players with more than 10 years.
The non-taxpayer mid-level exception will be $5.464 million; the taxpayer mid-level exception will be $3.376 million and the midlevel exception for a team with room under the salary cap will be $2.814 million.
Last week, reports suggested the salary cap could be as much as $2 million higher than previously projected. Teams active in free agency were reportedly operating under the assumption that the cap could be $67.1 million. The luxury tax was also projected to be $81.6 million.
• GOLLIVER: What should DeAndre Jordan do?
Free agents and teams can officially sign contracts at midnight on Thursday. The annual moratorium period to open free agency began on July 1; during that period, teams and players can only reach verbal agreements. While it is rare for teams or players to renege on such agreements, the Dallas Mavericks and Los Angeles Clippers are both trying to convince free-agent center DeAndre Jordan to sign with them. Jordan agreed to the terms of a four-year, $80 million contract with the Mavericks last week, but has since been talking to the Clippers about instead returning to the team he has spent his first seven NBA seasons with.
The salary cap is again expected to rise for the 2016–2017 season, perhaps to $90 million, when the NBA’s nine-year, $24 billion television rights deal kicks in.
- Mike Fiammetta