OK, guys, help me sort this one out. Here's the Bobcats' salary numbers for this season...
Add in Tyrus' $12.4 million (that is the first year number, right?) and Shaun Livingston's first year ($3.5 million?) and that has us sitting at $82.8 mil with a luxury tax mark of $70.3 mil. That's $12 million over the tax line. No way MJ pays tax on this squad as constructed. Plus, the Observer is reporting that we can't package Dampier's deal with other salary in a trade for 60 days per league rules. That leaves us with basically two options that I can see...
1. Trade the Dampier contract for a star-level player in one of these crazy trades that have been batted around, keeping us in tax territory but doing so for a star player and a top-tier team (which MJ has said he would do).
2. Waive Dampier, get back under the cap, and go with the team as constructed, with a smaller move to perhaps flip Diaw or Nazr's expiring and maybe one of our ugh contracts for someone who would be our starting center.
Given the circumstances, number 2 seems much more likely to me. Without the ability to pair Dampier's contract with others, I can't see any teams going in on a big deal. Yet, if we move ahead as we are, then we've traded our biggest expiring contract in a deal that really doesn't improve the squad from last year.
I was really pumped during all the discussions yesterday, but the more I look at the numbers the more I wonder if we can make it work. Surely, though, MJ and the front office have a plan for this one that's more than just buying out Dampier and running with what we've got? What am I missing, guys?