5 teams with the largest luxury tax bills entering the 2022-2023 NBA season, featuring the Golden State Warriors, Brooklyn Nets, and more

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Golden State Warriors celebrating their 2022 NBA title

Many teams that want to win an NBA title are forced to enter the luxury tax to do so. But what exactly is the luxury tax?

The luxury tax is basically an extra charge for teams whose payrolls go too far over the salary cap. The money paid in taxes is then redistributed to teams that pay less in salaries to try and create more parity around the league.

On that note, here are the five powerhouse teams with the largest luxury tax bills entering the 2022-2023 NBA season.


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#1 Golden State Warriors | Luxury tax bill: $170.2 million

The Golden State Warriors celebrating their 2022 NBA title
The Golden State Warriors celebrating their 2022 NBA title

It only makes sense that the defending NBA champions and most successful franchise of the last decade ranks first in luxury tax bills this season.

The Golden State Warriors paid an NBA-record $170.3 million luxury tax bill for their title roster last season. Much of this had to do with the team’s original big three of superstar Stephen Curry and All-Stars Draymond Green and Klay Thompson.

Their luxury tax bill is slightly down this season at $170.2 million but it’s still massive nonetheless.

The Warriors’ luxury tax bill is expected to get bigger soon though. The team recently signed Jordan Poole to a four-year, $140 million extension and forward Andrew Wiggins to a four-year, $109 million extension.

According to ESPN’s Bobby Marks, the Warriors could now pay around $215 million in payroll and $268 million in taxes next season.

Maybe that’s just the cost of being the champions.


#2 LA Clippers | Luxury tax bill: $144.7 million

LA Clippers superstar forwards Paul George and Kawhi Leonard
LA Clippers superstar forwards Paul George and Kawhi Leonard

The LA Clippers have had far less success than the Golden State Warriors over the past few years. The team is yet to make a single NBA Finals appearance in franchise history. They even missed the playoffs last season due to multiple injuries to key players.

However, the Clippers are still footing quite the bill for their roster built around superstars Paul George and Kawhi Leonard. They currently have the league’s highest payroll at $192 million, as well as the second-highest luxury tax bill at $144.7 million this season.

This number could reportedly reach as high as $200 million next season once they’re forced to pay the repeater tax. This is an extra penalty for teams that have paid the tax in three of the previous four seasons.

The Clippers will hope to finally stay healthy this season and get their money’s worth.


#3 Brooklyn Nets | Luxury tax bill: $108 million

Brooklyn Nets superstars Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving
Brooklyn Nets superstars Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving

The Brooklyn Nets are another expensive team that has dealt with disappointment in recent years. Last season, the team got swept in the first round of the playoffs by the Boston Celtics. They have also dealt with many injuries to key players.

The cost of maintaining their big three of Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving and Ben Simmons is still quite high. The Nets come in third in luxury tax bills this year at $108 million.

The Nets will look to redeem themselves and win their first NBA title this season after multiple disappointing years.


#4 Milwaukee Bucks | Luxury tax bill: $69.8 million

Milwaukee Bucks superstar forward Giannis Antetokounmpo celebrating his team's 2021 NBA championship success
Milwaukee Bucks superstar forward Giannis Antetokounmpo celebrating his team's 2021 NBA championship success

The Milwaukee Bucks are still paying a large premium to maintain their 2021 NBA title team built around superstar forward Giannis Antetokounmpo. The team ranks fourth in luxury tax bills this season at $69.8 million.

The Bucks will look to get healthy and try to win their second title in three seasons this year. They exited the playoffs in the Eastern Conference Finals last season.


#5 Boston Celtics | Luxury tax bill: $65.3 million

Boston Celtics star forwards Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum
Boston Celtics star forwards Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum

Finally, coming in fifth in luxury tax bills this season are the reigning Eastern Conference champions, the Boston Celtics, at $65.3 million.

The Celtics easily have one of the most promising young rosters in the league built around stars Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown. Last season, they made it to the NBA finals before losing to the Golden State Warriors.

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Boston will now look to take the next step this season and win its first NBA title since 2008.


For a full breakdown of each team's payroll and luxury tax payments, click here.

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Edited by Anantaajith Raghuraman
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