The NBA salary cap might not sink as low as the league originally thought next season.
NBA commissioner David Stern
on Friday said the league now projects the cap to be set at around $56.1 million for 2010-11. The exact figure won’t be known until early July.
Although the projected figure remains lower than the current $57.7 million cap, it’s a much more rosy projection than earlier estimates that had the league prepared for a cap as low as $50 million.
While the newest projection is great news for teams that are expected to be big spenders on 2010 free agents, the most highly anticipated class of all time, it doesn’t appear likely to have any bearing on the Thunder. Oklahoma City, which was projected to have between $10 million and $12 million in salary cap space this summer, could now have $12 million to $14 million to spend.
The Thunder, though, has several players in line for contract extensions in the upcoming years, including Kevin Durant
and Jeff Green
this summer. It is likely that the Thunder will reserve its cap space to maintain a reasonable budget once extensions for its current young players take effect.
Krstic expected to play Sunday
, who missed the final four regular-season games with a right knee bruise, went through a more intense practice Friday and will more than likely play in Sunday’s Game 1 against the Los Angeles Lakers.
"He did some work (Thursday), felt good (Friday) morning and we increased the intensity level (Friday),” said Thunder coach Scott Brooks