ESPN: The NBA salary cap has been set for next season at $57.7 million, a decline from 2008-09, allowing teams to begin signing players.

The figure the league announced Tuesday night was about $1 million less than last season’s cap of $58.68 million, even though league-wide revenue rose 2.5 percent. The number is expected to drop further next season when the full effect of the economic difficulties hits.

The new salary cap went into effect at 12:01 a.m. ET on Wednesday, ending the NBA’s moratorium period and allowing free agents to sign deals with teams.

Teams and players were able to begin negotiating on July 1. Ron Artest agreed to join the Los Angeles Lakers, and the Detroit Pistons reached agreements with Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva during the moratorium.

The luxury tax level also dropped to $69.92 million. Any team whose salary exceeds that will have to pay $1 for every $1 it goes over. The tax level last season was $71.2 million.

The midlevel exception will be $5.85 million.

  • xfellerx

    great.

  • http://www.vidaguerrasbutt.com/vida-guerra-playboy-picture-a_17.html#pic daboss1849

    Bye Bye LO… Thanks for showing up this playoffs. Good luck trying to make the playoffs next year without the mamba.

  • kb24bestever

    Damn we gone see how much jerry buss its willing to spend.

  • FLUKE

    Why you guys saying bye to LO the cap went down like 1.25mil so stop crying. DO IT MITCH. BRING BACK LO.

  • BigPC

    Lamar, let’s look at the big picture. You’ve got your ring and the best place to get your second one is right here wearing Laker purple and gold! Your childhood friend is in and making the champs(you included!) much stronger! Also, you must take into account the extra money you got for this years playoffs as well as the money for next years playoffs! There’s your extra cash! And last but not least! How many times did we hear about you taking less to be here, where you say, you want to be? Sign. Get your second ring, or, leave and be just another good player on second rate team!

  • LakersFirst

    With the Lakers over the salary cap, and over the luxury tax, it will make it harder to get free agents. This is why it is dangerous to be so far over the caps.

  • lakerferlife7