Over the summer, the NBA's new collective bargaining agreement was put into action, meaning that all sorts of new rules and restrictions are in place. One of them, severely handicaps the Denver Nuggets as the NBA's buyout season rolls in.
On Tuesday, the Charlotte Hornets and Miami Heat agreed on a trade to send Terry Rozier to Miami in exchange for Kyle Lowry and a protected 2027 first-round pick, according to multiple reports.
What does this mean for Denver?
Well, anytime a veteran player like Lowry is traded to a non-competitive team like the 10-31 Hornets, fans begin to speculate about a potential buyout.
In the case that hopeful Nuggets fans begin to dream about the six-time All-Star joining the reigning champs via buyout, it's best to pump the brakes -- or maybe pull the emergency brake.
The league's new collective bargaining agreement heavily restricts and punishes teams who overspend. As of now, the Nuggets are one of them.
Them, the Boston Celtics, Milwaukee Bucks, Golden State Warriors, LA Clippers, and Phoenix Suns are above at least one of the league's "tax aprons." This means that, among other things, they cannot sign any player who has been bought out after making more than the non-taxpayer mid-level-exception, which is $12.4 million.
Denver Nuggets "would love" to bring back Bruce Brown
Another recent Nuggets rumor comes from NBA insiders Chris Haynes and Marc Stein. The two revealed that Denver has interest in bringing back Bruce Brown, who was a key contributor to last season's NBA title team.
"I was told that the Denver Nuggets would love to have Bruce Brown back, but again, they're in a similar situation like Milwaukee, where they just don’t have the picks to try to do that," Haynes said on a recent episode of the #thisleague Uncut podcast. "But Bruce Brown knows how they feel, from what I've been told. That’s something to keep an eye on even down the road."
Unfortunately, the Nuggets likely wouldn't be able to match salary for the $22.5 million figure that Brown is set to make this season. The majority of the team's money is tied up in the starting five and it's tough to imagine Calvin Booth parting with any of those guys to get a deal done.