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Cleveland Cavaliers roster, salaries, cap space, available draft picks and more

Cleveland Cavaliers v Brooklyn Nets
Photo by David Dow/NBAE via Getty Images

An in-depth look at the tools Koby Altman and the Cavaliers have in improving this roster.

The offseason has officially begun for the Cleveland Cavaliers. This will be one of the most pivotal summers in recent memory due to Donovan Mitchell’s contract and the lingering questions about the small backcourt and oversized frontcourt.

Given the complexity of the salary cap, we’ve partnered with SalarySwish to use their data and answer any questions you might have about the Cavs’ financial situation.

Below is the live, updating table displaying what Koby Altman and company will be working with as they try to improve the roster. This is worth bookmarking as the table will automatically update throughout the summer with the Cavs’ offseason moves.

Cavs roster, salaries, draft picks, cap space and more

Below is SalarySwish’s table on the Cavs.

Now, because that is a lot of data, let’s dive into a few key pieces of context and what it means, and try to answer a few questions.

FAQ

What is the Cavs cap situation at the start of the offseason?

The NBA utilizes a soft salary cap, so just because the Cavaliers are currently over the cap by $17 million doesn’t mean they aren’t able to continue to exceed it. The Cavs have their mid-level exception of $12,859,000 that they can spend in free agency. They can also spend over the cap on a contract extension for Mitchell and re-sign Isaac Okoro in restricted free agency.

The Cavaliers are $13.5 million away from the luxury tax. They are nearly $21 million away from the first apron and almost $32 million from the 2nd apron. Given that they would likely try to match Okoro and use their mid-level exception, they will likely exceed the luxury tax line this summer.

What happens if the Cavs enter the luxury tax?

The penalty for going into the luxury tax, but staying under the first and second aprons is just a financial penalty for this offseason. Teams can go over the luxury tax threshold using one of the exceptions that they have. This would mean that there are no huge logistical issues with the Cavs exceeding that line with their mid-level exception this off-season.

The Cavs would however not have access to the full mid-level exception next season if they are over the luxury tax line at the start of the next offseason. Additionally, the Cavs aren’t able to execute sign-and-trades this season if that player takes them or keeps them above the first apron. Teams in the first apron have stricter rules on who they can sign mid-season and have tighter rules in the incoming salary in trades.

Teams in the second apron do not have the taxpayer midlevel exception, have stricter guidelines on trades, and can have their draft pick moved to a later spot if they are repeatedly in the second apron.

Isaac Okoro’s restricted free agency

Okoro will enter restricted free agency this season due to his rookie-scale contract ending. This means that Okoro is able to negotiate a contract with another team and get an offer sheet from them. The Cavs have a right to match the offer. If they did so, that would mean that Okoro would remain a Cavalier under the contract terms he procured from another team.

If the Cavs elect to not match, Okoro would then be under contract with the team he signed the offer sheet with.

Evan Mobley’s rookie extension

Mobley is eligible to sign a rookie extension. His rookie contract expires at the end of the 2024-25 season, but he can negotiate his next contract this summer. Any extension that he signs would not kick in until his rookie contract ends next offseason.

The extension Darius Garland signed in July 2022 is an example of this. Even though Garland signed it prior to the 2022-23 season, the money from that contract didn’t kick in until this past season. The same would be true for Mobley if he signed the extension. He will still be on his rookie contract during the 2024-25 season regardless of how this summer plays out.

In short, the extension will not have an impact on the salary cap this offseason.

What draft picks can the Cavs trade?

The Cavs are not able to trade away a first-round pick without getting one in return due to the Stepien Rule. This rule requires a team to have a first-round pick in every other draft. Cleveland sent out their own firsts for 2025, 2027, and 2029 in the Mitchell trade. They own a first in the even years (although the Utah Jazz have a right to pick swap in 2026 and 2028).

Even though they have a first this year and in 2026, 2028, and 2030, they aren’t able to trade them unless they get a first-rounder for those years back in the trade or have acquired first(s) that would prevent them from going two seasons in a row without having a first-round pick.

The Stepien Rule does not prevent teams from trading players that are selected. The Cavs would be able to trade the player they draft at No. 20 on draft night after they select them.

This rule doesn’t apply to second-round picks. The Cavs could trade any second-rounder that they have in their possession which includes the following:

  • 2025 Cavs second
  • 2025 Bucks second
  • 2026 Cavs second
  • 2027 Cavs second
  • 2027 Nuggets second
  • 2028 Cavs second
  • 2029 Cavs second

If you found this page useful, please bookmark it and/or share, and if you have any questions or information you’d like to see included, let us know in the comments below.

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