Nets gearing up for 2016 offseason bonanza

LeBron James, Kevin Durant
LeBron James, Kevin Durant

The perks of this Nets-Celtics blockbuster just keep on coming.

Buried in a piece on Netsdaily this week is an interesting note about the Nets salary situation in 2015-16:

Also, and this is a bit of a shocker: As one Nets insider put it, “By doing the deal we will go under the tax in 15-16 thus avoiding the repeater tax.” Indeed in 2013-14, and 2014-15, as currently projected, the Nets will play more as a result of the trade. But with Wallace’s deal off the books in 2015-16, the Nets go under the tax threshold. That’s important. The dreaded repeated tax kicks in after a team has gone over the threshold for three consecutive years. That will give them opportunities, like the ability to sign-and-trade, with the free agent draft class in 2016. Who’s available? Hint: his initials are KD.

Yes, “KD” as in Kevin Durant; the second-best basketball player in the world and now a client of former Nets minority owner turned agent, Jay-Z of Roc Nation Sports.

As we noted on Friday, the impending trade that will bring Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, and Jason Terry to the Nets, will also benefit the team’s salary structure in the long-term. By getting rid of Gerald Wallace’s contract, the Nets will only have about $66.9 million in committed salaries for the 15′-16′ season: thus enabling them to do sign-and-trades that summer, as Netsdaily notes.

Out of curiosity, we took a look at what other top free agents will be available in the summer of 2016. The list is, well, special.

Key: T = Team Option, P = Player Option, N= Partial/Non-Guaranteed,
Q = Qualifying Offer, * = Option in Prior Year, E = Early Termination Option

Deron Williams (ETO)
Damian Lillard (Q*)
Goran Dragic (*)
Austin Rivers (Q*)

Dwyane Wade (*)
Eric Gordon (*)
Joe Johnson
Aaron Afflalo (*)
Bradley Beal (Q*)
Jamal Crawford (*)
Dion Waiters (Q*)
Terrence Ross (Q*)

LeBron James (*)
Kevin Durant
Danilo Gallinari
Nicolas Batum
Gerald Wallace
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (Q*)
Harrison Barnes (Q*)
Jeff Green (*)
Mo Harkless (Q*)
Wilson Chandler (*)

Kevin Love (*)
Chris Bosh (*)
Anthony Davis (Q*)
David Lee
Ryan Anderson
Ersan Ilyasova (N)
Thaddeus Young (*)
Thomas Robinson (Q*)

Roy Hibbert (*)
Joakim Noah
Al Horford
Brook Lopez (*)
Andre Drummond (Q*)

Note: These are only the top free agents. You can see a full list from Hoopsworld here.

The Nets have just $22,331,135 committed in salary in 2016-17, all to Deron Williams in the form of an early termination option.

Perhaps Jay-Z will bring his biggest client back to the borough where he was raised? Perhaps the Nets will be able to get their hands on Damian Lillard — the player that was selected using the draft pick the Nets traded for Gerald Wallace? Perhaps the Nets can sneak one of Miami’s big 3?

One thing is for sure: it should be a summer of fun and excitement.