Two Owner Camps
There seems to be two very different ideas among owners in approaching the new CBA. One group thinks that the bad contracts and overpaid players will be fixed in the new CBA with a softer cap or an extension of the Alan Houston rule to cover any bad contract. These owners are spending freely in the hopes that the NBA will help protect them, at least in terms of competitiveness on the court, from themselves. If they can buy out a contract and cut it from their salary cap at any time think of how easily mistakes like the Eddie Curry contract could be erased. So you pay someone like Darko $20 million and just pay him to leave if he isn't earning it. This would give big money, big market teams a decided advantage and make the players union happy by giving more money to players.
The other set of owners see a harder cap coming with a franchise player instead of bird rights and no mid level exception. This would mean that teams that were shrewd in their contracts would have the advantage over big spenders that would be stuck with bad contracts on their salary caps and unable to keep adding talent when they are over the cap. You can see Teams like the Jazz let their players go thinking that bad contracts this year will kill them on the court in the future. The worst part of all this is with the owners divided a lockout seems very likely.