This seems like a good resource: http://espn.go.com/nba/story/_/page/...pares-last-one
Free agents and restricted free agency
• 2005 CBA: A cap hold of 150 percent to 300 percent continues to count against the team's cap for its free agents who have Bird rights or were first-round picks. A team has seven days to match an offer sheet to its restricted free agent. Qualifying offers to restricted free agents are based on the player's draft position.
• 2011 CBA: Cap holds are reduced for most players who have Bird rights or were first-round picks, and now range from 150 percent to 250 percent. Teams have three days to match an offer sheet to its restricted free agent. Players can qualify for a better qualifying offer by meeting certain criteria. High-drafted players might receive a lower qualifying offer by failing to meet the same criteria.
• Who benefits? The reduction in cap holds provides teams with additional cap room to spend on other team's free agents -- giving players slightly higher salaries and promoting player movement.
The reduction in the waiting period from sevendays to three days is a big win for restricted free agents -- teams are often very hesitant to make offers to restricted free agents because they don't want to tie up the salary amount on their cap for an entire week while the other team makes up its mind whether to match.
The higher qualifying offers help ensure that lower-drafted players who become starters or regular rotation players receive a salary that is in line with their performance. Conversely, the lower qualifying offer for underperforming high draft picks helps protect teams. For instance, rather than submitting an $8.8 million offer to retain the rights to Greg Oden, Portland would be able to offer much less. In fact, I fully expect this to be nicknamed the "Greg Oden Rule."
• 2005 CBA: Six years with 10.5 percent raises for Bird free agents; five years with 8 percent raises for other players. Maximum salaries are approximately 25, 30 or 35 percent of the salary cap, depending on the player's years of service.
• 2011 CBA: Five years with 7.5 percent raises for Bird free agents; four years with 4.5 percent raises for other players (including all sign-and-trade transactions). The maximum salaries are the same as the 2005 CBA, except players coming off their rookie scale contracts qualify for the 30 percent maximum if they meet certain criteria. Minimum and rookie scale salaries are frozen near their 2010-11 levels until revenues rise enough that the reduction is proportional to the 12 percent reduction in the overall system.
• Who benefits? These changes provide the league with more cost control. The exception is the higher maximum salary for fifth-year players who meet certain league honors (MVP, an all-NBA team member twice, or an All-Star twice), which lets young superstars (think Derrick Rose) cash in with a bigger contract sooner.
The higher maximum salary for fifth-year players can also benefit teams. In 2006 LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh all signed shorter extensions (which allowed them to become free agents in three years) rather than signing on for the maximum five years. The three players timed their free agency to follow their seventh season in the league, when they became eligible for the 30 percent maximum. Allowing franchise players such as these to sign for the higher maximum sooner reduces the temptation for these players to sign shorter contracts, delaying their eventual free agency.
In regards to what we're able to do with what's left will probably equal what a max salary player gets now...if that makes any sense.
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I would go after hibbert up to 16 a year.I think if he keeps working with duncan in the offseason he's gonna be a top 2 or 3 center very soon.Although i think indiana will match.Wouldn't want lopez for the money he will command.He actually seems like he's getting worse every year.I would go after nick batum hard.He's young and fits what we want to do,he's still very young, and i think he can be better than any of the 3's in the draft.If we do somehow take a 3 in the draft i wouldn't mind kris humphries.I think he's a very underrated player.And if we draft t-rob and miss out of everyone else, i would look at signing kaman for a 2 or 3 year deal.He'd give us depth at center and would be a good guy to teach biz some low post scoring.I actually think he's who we're gonna end up with!