Title: Making sense of the Raptors’ financial situation heading into the 2017-18 season
Date: October 17, 2017
Original Source: The Athletic
Synopsis: In my latest for The Athletic Toronto, I took an updated look at the Raptors’ cap and tax situation, and what it could mean for their final roster spot.
Won’t think for a second that the official start of the 2017-18 NBA season means you are freed from salary cap and luxury tax talk. While it’s true the Toronto Raptors submitted their roster on Monday, and the NBA released all 30 rosters publicly, that doesn’t mean a whole heck of a lot. The Raptors can still change course at any time, and there are still some large financial considerations that hang over the proceedings.
It seems as good a time as any for a refresher on the financial situation Toronto finds itself in, though. It’s something we haven’t done a full update in earnest on since before Norman Powell signed his extension, and an update should provide some clarity on the battle for the Raptors’ final roster spot. Before looking at the entire picture, some quick notes.
Powell’s extension: As explained before the deal was done, Powell’s maximum extension will pay him 120 per cent of the league’s estimated average salary in 2018-19. From there, his salary can increase by eight per cent of the first-year salary annually, non-compounding. Based on current estimates, that makes the deal a four-year pact starting at $9.36 million and totalling $41.9 million.
Team options: Every first-round pick is signed to a rookie-scale contract that guarantees their salary for their first two seasons. The deals also include two team option years that teams have to decide whether or not to exercise a year in advance. In most cases, teams will wind up picking up both option years. They’re relatively inexpensive, and it’s tough to give up on first-round picks after two or even three seasons.