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While the Celtics allowed the NBA's most sizable trade exception, one that could absorb as much as $17.1 million in player salary, to expire, they acquired a player in Malcolm Brogdon, who's on their books for $22.6 million this season. Furthermore, they did so while keeping their playoff rotation intact, instead parting with their 2023 first-round draft pick.

Boston also signed veteran forward Danilo Gallinari, utilizing the taxpayer mid-level exception. Gallinari, a career 15.6 points per game scorer, is under contract for $6.5 million for the 2022-23 campaign and $13.3 million over the life of his two-year deal, which comes with a player option for 2023-24.

The Celtics also retained Sam Hauser and Luke Kornet. They have 12 players signed to standard contracts and have to fill at least two of their three open roster spots. There's a growing belief they'll do so by having an open competition at training camp.

Boston already projects to have the fifth-most expensive NBA team this season, per Yossi Gozlan of HoopsHype. According to Gozlan, whose work related to the NBA's salary cap is exceptional, the Celtics have a projected payroll of $170.1 million and a luxury tax bill of $45.2 million, resulting in a combined payment of $215.3 million.

Gozlan adds that Boston narrowly avoided the luxury tax last season, which the Celtics would've exceeded had they won the NBA Finals. Despite not starting their repeater clock, signing at least two more players to standard contracts will bring their luxury tax payment to at least $59 million. As a result, Gozlan notes their total expenses will exceed $230 million this season.

The Milwaukee Bucks project to have the fourth-most expensive team for the 2022-23 campaign, followed by the Brooklyn Nets, whose bill could get much lighter if they trade Kevin Durant and or Kyrie Irving. With a projected $336.6 million total payment, the Los Angeles Clippers can currently anticipate having the second-priciest team. That figure is exceeded only by the defending NBA champion Golden State Warriors, who project to have $353.6 million in total payments for their team this season.

Further Reading

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