Tyreke Evans Headed to NOLA - The Salary Cap Ramifications

USA TODAY Sports

Now that we know the deal, what do the numbers say?

Tyreke Evans is headed to New Orleans, as hinted at by Tyreke Evans' brother and manager at 1:21am and reported by Ailene Voisin of the Sac Bee at 2:56am. Evidently the west coast does not care if the rest of us ever sleep. I spent too much time last night working out scenarios in excel and crawled to bed around 1:00am.

Now that we know the deal, I can give you the numbers. This is what we know. New Orleans is trading the draft rights to Nerlens Noel and their 2014 First Round Pick to Philadelphia for Jrue Holiday. Tyreke Evans will sign a contract with Sacramento and then be traded to New Orleans for Greivis Vasquez and Robin Lopez. In order to take on Jrue Holiday's salary New Orleans will need to renounce their rights to Xavier Henry, Al-Farouq Aminu, Roger Mason Jr., and Lou Amundson. No salary is going to Philadelphia so the Pelicans are trading Jrue into cap space. Thanks to Michael McNamara and Jason Calmes over at Bourbon Street Shots for setting me straight on that. Follow me on Twitter to watch how the entire painful explanation went down. I shouldn't duel with a man that has a PhD in mathematics. How this all breaks down is below.

Age 2013-2014 2014-2015 2015-2016 2016-2017
Eric Gordon 25 $14,283,844 $14,898,958 $15,514,031
Tyreke Evans 23 $10,300,000 $10,700,000 $11,200,000 $11,800,000
Jrue Holiday 23 $9,213,484 $9,904,495 $10,595,507 $11,286,518
Ryan Anderson 25 $8,308,500 $8,491,500 $8,500,000
Anthony Davis 20 $5,375,760 $5,607,240 $7,070,730
Jason Smith 27 $2,500,000
Austin Rivers 21 $2,339,040 $2,439,840 $3,110,796
Lance Thomas 25 $884,293
Terrel Harris 26 $884,293
Brian Roberts 28 $788,872
Darius Miller 23 $788,872
Pierre Jackson 21 $490,180
Total 23.9 $56,157,138 $52,042,033 $55,991,064 $23,086,518

At this point New Orleans would have a couple options. The Pelicans will have $2,342,862 in salary cap space and the room exception of $2,652,000 available. As far as I can tell, those two amounts cannot be added together. Waiving any of the guaranteed contracts earns their salary in cap space. There would be a temporary cap hold of $490,180, but that amount could be applied to the contract offered since the free agent would bring New Orleans back up to 12 players, as explained here and here. Every additional player waived would add their salary MINUS a $490,180 cap hold. So, waiving Thomas and Harris would compute in this manner.

$2,342,862 (cap space) + $884,293 (waive Thomas) + $884,293 (waive Harris) - $490,180 (cap hold) = $3,621,268

The Pelicans could release additional players but the value increased would be even less at this point, especially considering the relative steals that Roberts and Miller are on their current contract. Demps could waive Thomas and Harris, offer the cap space available to a free agent and then offer the room exception to an additional free agent. The cap space contract could be up to 4 years and nearly $15.5 Million (start with cap space, 4.5% raises each season) and the room exception contract another two years at roughly $5.4 Million. Players can be had at that price. Shooters would be my primary target. Additional depth along the back line could also be pursued.

Dell Demps and Monty Williams warned us that the roster would look significantly different. We should have listened. All of this is not possible unless Nerlens Noel and Ben McLemore slide down the draft to #6 and #7 for New Orleans and Sacramento. We should send a gift basket to Cleveland, Orlando (although Oladipo was the right pick), Washington (although Porter was the right pick), Charlotte, and Phoenix.

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