NBA Fines Warriors Owner Joe Lacob $500K

The NBA has finished Warriors owner Joe Lacob $500K for violating the league’s policy regarding publicly discussing collective bargaining talks, which are currently ongoing between the league and the Players Association, sources tell Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.

Lacob described the NBA’s luxury tax system as “very unfair” last week on the Point Forward podcast hosted by Andre Iguodala and Evan Turnerby Wojnarowski.

The hardest thing of all is navigating this luxury tax, unfortunately. I went back to New York this week for labor meetings. I’m on the committee. And you know, obviously, the league wants everyone to have a chance and right now, there’s a certain element out there that believes we ‘checkbook win…’ We won because we have the most salaries on our team.

The truth is, we’re only $40 million more than the luxury tax. Now, that’s not small but it’s not a massive number. We’re $200 million over in total because most of that is this incredible penal luxury tax. And what I consider to be unfair and I’m going to say it on this podcast and I hope it gets back to whoever is listening. Obviously, it’s self-serving for me to say this, but I think it’s a very unfair system because our team is built by….all top eight players are all drafted by this team.”

Lacob was referring to the “repeater” luxury tax penalties given to teams, like the Warriors, that have been taxpayers in three of the previous four seasons. Last season, Golden State was hit with a record $170,331,194 luxury tax payment — nearly breaking the previous league-wide record for total luxury tax payments, which was $173.3MM back in 2002/03. The seven taxpaying teams in ’21/22 shattered that record with a staggering combined total of $481,021,386.

The Warriors are projected to have a $181.3MM luxury tax bill in ’22/23, according to ESPN’s Bobby Marks, who tweet that the bill could balloon to over $200MM in ’23/24 if the team gives Andrew Wiggins and Jordan Poole expansions.

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