Who has Cap-space?
Please note that these are the estimated values before the NBA Draft. Lotto picks can quickly remove capspace while second rounders don't move the needle at all. ALSO, and this is the big ALSO, this is ALSO before we know about certain players with big contracts who have a player's option for the last year, or an early termination option for their last year. So guys like LeBron James or Carmelo Anthony have a chance to skip town if they want -- and thus provide ample cap-space for their teams.
So, yes, if the Jazz let all their UFA's go (Richard Jefferson, Andris Biedrins, Marvin Williams, etc), and don't retain RFA guard/forward Gordon Hayward then they'll have over $30 million to spend. Does that mean they'll blow it all in one place, like a top level free agent? Probably not. The Jazz have money to spend, but need to spend it wisely. They have to be able to throw some of that future money at Enes Kanter and/or Alec Burks and/or Trey Burke and/or Rudy Gobert. And retain future money for their 2014 NBA Draft lotto pick if they even have one by the end of draft night.
Last season the Jazz used their cap space on bringing on bad players with bad contracts, but with expiring deals. This is that vaunted 'flexibility' we've been hearing about. Now we see it in practice -- a revolving door of lots of cap space. Compared to the other destinations with 'mucho mucho' cap space you see that it's an agents market right now, as there are so many teams to be used as leverage against one another.
Furthermore, LAL and DAL (owner who spoils his players) are more attractive destinations. You could argue that if you are looking at franchise momentum then PHX and DET are ahead as well. PHI was one of the worst teams ever, but players know that they can get a lot of playing time (thus stats) there, because they have so many fluid parts right now in their non-system. IN a way, the Jazz are as attractive a free agent destination as a team with half the available cap space.
I am scouting the 2002 draft class right now to see which free agents our team will target this off-season.
This is kind of a downer, but I think it underscored the issue that our team has fewer options available to it in order to build a contender. The Jazz have all the capspace in the world right now, and we'll see which free agents we bring in off the open market. I think GM Dennis Lindsey is doing a great job with using our cap space on assets instead. It's better than bringing in expensive garbage.