The Thunder infamously traded James Harden, at least in part, to dodge the luxury tax.
Oklahoma City doesn’t appear to be worried about spending big any longer.
Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN:
Based on those terms, Grant’s salary next season will be between $8,333,333 and $9,782,609. Let’s assume it’s on the low end (most likely). Let’s also assume the Thunder sign their three second-round picks to minimum contracts and sign one more veteran (maybe re-signing Raymond Felton, though the specific player doesn’t matter here) to a minimum contract.
Oklahoma City would be in line for a $150,152,424 luxury-tax bill!
The largest luxury tax paid in NBA history was $90,570,781 by the 2014 Nets. That looks paltry next to the Thunder’s slated amount.
However, the luxury tax isn’t assessed until the final day of the regular season. The Thunder have plenty of time to trim salary. They can stretch Kyle Singler, trade Patrick Patterson or even move bigger names like Carmelo Anthony and Steven Adams.
Or suck it up and pay big to maximize Russell Westbrook‘s supporting cast.