As the trade deadline has come and gone with minimal activity by our beloved Sixers, I spent ALL DAY (ok not all day) today wondering what the Sixers might do come this offseason. After hearing DiLeo talk today about plan A (for "Andrew!") and plan B (for "not Bynum??") it sounded as though the Sixers are certainly open to changing the roster, but want to keep as many assets as possible for the long term. I like this line of thinking. Another FanPost by user J2NICE provided a specific example of the Sixers re-signing Nick Young and Bynum then going after Paul Millsap this offseason, and, combined with DiLeo's comments, I wanted to see how feasible signing Bynum (or another max salary FA) AND another high-salary player would be, all while still filling out the rest of the roster. So, I did some math to figure it out. Please don't hesitate to correct me if I'm wrong about any of the following numbers or my assumptions- I'm really just interested in predicting what the Sixers might do this offseason. In this example I have the Sixers re-signing Nick Young, but he could be replaced by any other role-player FA. Without further adieu, here is the committed salary for 2013-2014 (according to HoopsWorld):
Thaddeus Young: $8.85m
Spencer Hawes: $6.6m
Jason Richardson: $6.2m
Evan Turner: $6.68m
Kwame Brown: $3m
Lavoy Allen: $3m
Jrue Holiday: $9.21m
Arnett Moultrie: $1.09m
Total committed salary: $44.63m
+ Nick Young: $5m (assuming depreciation in value after a less-impressive season this year) = $49.63m
+ Andrew Bynum: $18m (assuming a backloaded 5 year, $100m salary...I don't really know anything about player contracts) = $67.63m
Total potential salary for 2013-2014 season (with N. Young and Bynum): $67.63m
Total potential salary for 2013-2014 season (with only Bynum): $62.63m
Being that the tax level for this season is set at around $70m (although the soft cap is $59m), we might expect about the same levels next season, leaving the Sixers with either about $2.5m in room (w/Young and Bynum) or about $7.5m in room (w/only Bynum). One player that many-a-fan would love to have this offseason (but I don't know would be a fit with Thad already on the roster) is Paul Millsap. I think it's expected that Millsap will garner a contract in the $10m+/yr range, so unless the Sixers are willing to pay the luxury tax, they can't afford to add him (and fill out the rest of the roster) either way.
To lessen the total salary, one option I've heard of is possibly negotiating a buyout with Jason Richardson (depending on his post-injury career plans, I suppose), although I have no idea how this would impact the cap hold (let's assume it would remove his salary). If our assumption is correct and they are able to go this route, then perhaps they could afford to add a free agent like Millsap in addition to Bynum this offseason (while filling the rest out with rookies and minimum salary VETS, whom everybody loves). Indeed, it sounds as though DiLeo (see here) is planning on spending the offseason reconsidering any trades of the current roster (i.e. Turner, Hawes and Kwame probably have the most likely to be traded contracts, if you ask me), which may also free up some dough. I would certainly expect any moves to be of the salary-dumping variety with returns such as picks (!!!) and lesser (expiring?) contracts. While these moves may also free up some money, it is unclear exactly how much. Anyway, the point is that, as it stands, the Sixers look good to add one maximum salary player (Bynum) in the offseason, but to add another high-salary type player AND fill out the roster would require some contract maneuvering. What do you think?