At least five teams are having their salary cap personnel prepare for a scenario in which the cap for the 20-21 season could drop between 10 and 15 percent due to the NBA's situation with China, sources tell Keith Smith of Yahoo! Sports.
"It's like the cap spike, but opposite,” a league source said. “After all the money everyone spent last summer, this would have a major impact on all of us."
The NBA recently released a projection of $116 million for the 20-21 season, which is $7 million higher than the $109 million mark for 19-20.
Teams internally plan for a variety of scenarios, but a 10 to 15 percent drop would be dramatic.
“I haven’t really been in this spot before. The cap has only gone up in recent years. It’s really different. I have to wonder if the league would be pressed to consider some measures to not drop the cap down so far from where we are today at $109 [million]. Otherwise, a bunch of us are over the tax. It’d be nice to know now, because that changes how we approach trades and everything else throughout the season.”
A number of teams could unexpectedly find themselves in the luxury tax due to the sudden drop in the cap.