Okay folks, it’s NBA Free Agency time. And it’s Day 2, and there are a lot of crazy things happening. The Utah Jazz made a trade for Ricky Rubio (we’ll treat him well, thank you Minnesota Timberwolves), and re-signed restricted free agent Joe Ingles. The team also drafted three players, two in the first round: Donovan Mitchell and Tony Bradley. The third, a second rounder, is going to have a harder time making the team - but we do love what Nigel Williams-Goss brings to the table.
There’s that ONE big free agent left to figure out in Gordon Hayward. There’s a bunch of smaller ones left in George Hill, Shelvin Mack, and Jeff Withey. We’ve already said goodbye to Trey Lyles. And there’s a lot more fun to be had with non-guaranteed timelines coming up for Boris Diaw (July 15th), and Raul Neto (much later, January 10th). And to add onto that, the extension deadlines for Dante Exum and Rodney Hood are a few months away on October 31st.
So we’re going to see Dennis Lindsey and company work hard all summer long. But RIGHT NOW, this is what our cap looks like: $90.5 M on the books, out of a $99.1 M max. The luxury tax level is far away at $119.3 M. So there’s lots of wiggle room.
Thank you to the internet for letting me get this data. The current 2017-2018 rookies have not signed contracts, so their values do not find themselves in the “on the books” rows; they are in the “all possible salary” rows. The data for those 1st round contracts come from the #13 and #28 draft picks last season (Giorgios Papagiannis and Skal Labissiere respectively), what their contracts were and then adjusted for the higher BRI split this year (Salary Cap up from $94.143 to $99.093 million). This is original research. So if you are using this, please credit me guise. Let’s be cool about it. I put in a lot of work for this table.
So Rubio is locked in for another two years, and that’s good and cheaper than what George Hill wanted. Neto is a steal at his current price, but I think Quin Snyder is going to want to see him earn his spot in training camp against the likes of Nigel, Donovan, and others.
Joe Johnson, Dante Exum, Rodney Hood, and Derrick Favors are all in potential contract years coming up - Exum and Hood will not be if they get an extension done in time.
Boris Diaw is, well, he’s precisely the sage, older veteran with all the tricks in the books that you’d want to keep on the roster - especially one without a lot of playoff experience. (And replacing Hill with Rubio takes away a lot of minutes as well.) But I think Diaw is going to be hard to keep if right now if the Jazz are going to be making moves.
If the Miller family wants this legacy trust charity that raised ticket prices to remain under the cap and re-sign Gordon Hayward they are going to need to move some guys. Is Gordon that good? I don’t know. But I do think that a $Billion dollar company could manage being over the cap. Especially after being UNDER it for so many seasons now in a row.
There are some free agents out there that I think could help this team, Paul Millsap, Milos Teodosic, and Danilo Gallinari amongst them. However, I don’t know if the Jazz are going to even think about those guys unless it’s a “Plan B” situation if the team loses Gordon Hayward to the Trash Palm Trees or Poop Shamrocks.
Show them the money.