Written by Garrett Catalana – @GarrettCatalana
Don’t expect Bryan Colangelo and Nuggets’ GM Tim Connelly to talk much at the next league meeting.
Colangelo just made a very Hinkie-esque move to get the Sixers closer to the salary floor, by claiming former Cavaliers guard Mo Williams off waivers from Denver. The Nuggets had just acquired Williams from Atlanta to help the team with the league’s lowest payroll (around $74.5 million) get closer to the NBA salary floor ($84,728,000 in 2016-17). By taking on Williams’ cap figure, the Nuggets added $2,194,500 to its salary table, but were only liable to pay $1.1 million of Williams’ salary (the Cavaliers had already paid the rest). The Nuggets then placed Williams on waivers so that the team could sign Alonzo Gee to a second ten-day contract. Once he did clear, Williams’ remaining salary would be paid by Denver and his cap figure would remain on the books.
Meanwhile, the Sixers were also one of the six teams in the NBA below the NBA salary floor. Prior to adding Williams, the Sixers were $7.7 million below the salary floor, even as they made salary dump moves earlier this season (Carl Landry, Tibor Pleiss, & Sasha Kaun). By snagging Williams on waivers, the Sixers are inching closer to the salary floor, where they are now about $5.5 million away.
The Sixers were able to claim Williams because Chasson Randle’s original ten-day contract had expired. The Sixers have since placed Williams on waivers again, meaning any team with cap space can do what the Sixers just did to the Nuggets. If he goes unclaimed, the Sixers are liable to pay his remaining salary and the Sixers are $2.2 million closer to the salary floor.
We have seen this salary dump moves in the past by Colangelo’s predecessor, Sam Hinkie, to reach the salary floor (JaVale McGee, Danny Granger, Gerald Wallace, etc.) but nothing as shrewd as this, where the Sixers helped close their salary floor margin by taking a player from another team attempting to make the same sort of move. While it is within the rules of the CBA, it isn’t exactly a very nice gesture by Colangelo to make this move. We will see if this move causes any friction between the Nuggets and Sixers in the future.
Fun Fact: If Williams goes unclaimed, the Sixers will be paying twelve players who are not on the team.
- Carl Landry ($6,500,000)
- Tibor Pleiss ($3,000,000)
- Mo Williams ($2,194,500)
- Sasha Kaun ($1,333,420)
- Elton Brand ($980,431)
- Hollis Thompson ($442,126)
- Brandon Paul ($155,000)
- Shawn Long ($65,000)
- James Webb III ($65,000)
- Cat Barber ($50,000)
- Dionte Christmas ($50,000)
- Chasson Randle [first ten-day contract] ($31,969)*
*Currently playing on second ten-day contract
Photo: Keith Allison (via: Wikimedia Commons)