Update on the Spurs Cap Situation

*Update to the update*

A little while back I wrote a piece that pondered whether bringing Matt Bonner back was worth it if it meant paying the luxury tax. As fans, I guess we shouldn’t care about whether or not the Spurs pay the tax; but as a realist I can’t help but keep that in my head. What I always come back to is the knowledge that Spurs have almost left San Antonio at least twice since I became a die-hard fan, and money always played a big part in those situations.

Like it or not, there’s just not the capital in the region to make up the difference between paying the tax and getting a rebate from the League; Los Angeles and New York can weather that, but not San Antonio. Besides, the Spurs have shown that you can be a contender without paying a huge tax bill and vice-versa for the New York Knicks as of late.

As we wait with bated breath news on the Richard Jefferson front, I thought it would be worthwhile to see just what kind of room the Spurs have to work with after signing Tiago and, go figure, Matt Bonner. (I’ll try to be more concise than last time). Now it may or may not be a line in the sand that the Spurs cannot or will not cross this season, but I am going to assume that $70.3 million is the magic number. Furthermore, I’ve penciled Matt Bonner in for $4 million since I haven’t seen a breakdown of his new contract anywhere as of yet. What that means is that the Spurs have between $8.79 and $11.93 million with which to work under the tax line depending on the status of Hairston, Temple, Gee, and Jerrells.

Here’s my best guess what happens to that wedge of the pie.

  • Hairston and Temple make the roster
  • James Anderson is signed to 100% of rookie scale
  • Another player is signed into the MLE
  • RJ resigns for 4 years $31.5 million with ½ of the last season unguaranteed ($6.75 mil to start)

If all of that happens, the Spurs salary projects at $70.24 million for 13 players, leaving them room to sign a few 10 day contracts during the season if needed, the full BAE to work with if a player too good to pass up becomes available, and two open roster spots.

If they stay disciplined and manage to hold this figure, come next summer they could be getting a check worth anywhere from $2 to $5 million (based on past history). Should the lock-out come to pass, that small amount of financial relief just might give Peter Holt the wiggle room to wait the Players Union out.

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  • bdiddy

    I forgot James Anderson on the first posting of this piece…whoops!

  • tj

    I like what the Spurs have now at shooting guard with Ginobili, Anderson, and Hill (who plays both PG & SG). Why do they feel compeled to go out and sign a shooting guard? Remember how high a level Ginobili was playing towards the end of last season when the Spurs went to their Los Spurs jerseys. He looked the best hes looked in his whole career at the end of last season. Dont try to go and start Bogans over him or Jerome James over him. Manu Ginobili should be the starter next season.

  • http://airalamo.com Mike

    TJ I agree with you. I believe that Gino will start. We need his energy from the start.

  • Eric S

    I have been a fan for about 30 years now and I don’t remember the Spurs ever coming close to leaving. When did this happen? Maybe I missed something.

    • bdiddy

      I remember there being lots of talk around the time Robinson came, but before the alamodome and then again before the SBC, now ATT center was built…probably just saber rattling, but most Spurs fans I knew at the time(s) were genuinely concerned.

  • bdiddy

    By the by, if what I’m hearing about RJ’s deal is true, then everything I posted above is crap.

  • bdiddy

    Spurs are now +1 million over the tax line

    • bdiddy

      That figure depends on the specifics of Bonner’s deal