Do the Sacramento Kings have to spend another dime to climb over the NBA's salary cap floor for the 2012-13 season?
The floor is set at $46.4 million, or 80 percent of the NBA salary cap, per Larry Coon. The Kings have 11 players locked in at $43.2 million, and will soon sign Thomas Robinson to his rookie scale contract. The Kings, like most teams, give their first-round picks 120 percent of the rookie scale, which is the max allowable under NBA rules. So while Robinson's cap hold is set at $2.8 million, he'll almost assuredly be on the books for $3.3 million this season.
Adding that in to the Kings' other players brings Sacramento's team salary to $46.5 million, about $100,000 over the salary floor. The Kings will have 12 players on their roster after signing Robinson. So in theory, the Kings could decide to revoke Jason Thompson's multi-year offer, drop out of the Ryan Anderson and Andrei Kirilenko sweepstakes, decline to chase any veterans for the backcourt and enter the season as is. It'd be perfectly legal.
Of course, that won't happen. The team will either keep Thompson or land another big man making decent money to get above $50 million. Chances are the team adds one other player, perhaps a veteran point guard or yet another small forward, to get to 14 players. Unless there's a front-loaded offer for Anderson or a major trade, the team won't likely hit the $58 million salary cap. But the salary floor is not an issue going forward.
Also, keep in mind that we determined last year that the floor is based on actual salary paid, so using the amnesty waiver wouldn't affect it as players waived under the clause still get paid.