NBA Free Agency: How do Jarrett Jack and Earl Clark signings affect Cleveland's salary cap situation?


Cavaliers General Manager Chris Grant has had his most aggressive free agency period with the Cleveland Cavaliers over the last few days. Do the Cavaliers still have financial flexibility?

Do the Cavaliers still have financial flexibility?

The short answer is that yes, the Cleveland Cavaliers still do have significant financial flexibility. Anthony Bennett, Sergey Karasev, Carrick Felix, Jarrett Jack, and Earl Clark will in all likelihood join Kyrie Irving and company officially in the next few weeks. If Bennett and Karasev sign for 120% of the slotted value of their respective draft picks, which is all but a certainty, this is what the Cavaliers are looking at, currently, for 2013-2014:

Anderson Varejao - $9.1

Kyrie Irving - $5.9

Jarrett Jack - $5.9

Anthony Bennett - $5.4

Tristan Thompson - $4.2

Earl Clark - $4.5

Dion Waiters - $3.9

Alonzo Gee - $3

CJ Miles - $2.25

Sergey Karasev - $1.5

Carrick Felix - $.8

Tyler Zeller - $1.6

Contract figures from The total: 12 players adding up to about $48.4 million. The Salary cap is likely to be at $58.5 million for this season, with a floor of about $52.6 million. Whether or not you go over the cap or under the floor is determined at the end of the season, so the Cavaliers have time to get to the floor. While I do expect Cleveland to be above the floor, there isn't really a penalty for not going over it. In the meantime, Chris Grant has about $10 million to play with to fill in three roster spots. If the Cavaliers cut or trade CJ Miles, you can add $2.25 million to that figure, but he is at least worth that contract.

What about the summer of 2014? If the Cavaliers exercise Varejao's option but decline Clark and Gee while factoring in a 2014 first round draft pick somewhere between 16-20, the Cavaliers have about $43.3 million committed, assuming the young draft picks like Waiters and Zeller see their rookie options picked up (this should happen sometime before the season, by the way). With the salary cap for 2014-2015 projected to be somewhere around $62.5 million, the Cavaliers are still right where they need to be to offer a max or near max deal next season. Additionally, Varejao could be bought out for $4 million which would save almost $6 million more.

Jason Lloyd says Chris Grant is still working on adding another big man to the mix. He certainly has the flexibility to go get one.

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