It’s tough to find many problems with Steve Novak’s contract if he truly is just making the veteran minimum salary. That comes out to something like $1.55 million this season, which is an affordable deal for a skilled shooter, even one who can’t do much else.
The contract information hasn’t been quite released yet–teams never disclose these things–but it’s a pretty safe bet to assume that’s all that Novak is getting from the Bucks. The team would have to use an exception to sign him any other way, since Milwaukee is over the salary cap already.
Interestingly enough, Milwaukee will actually be reimbursed for the contract, as long as it’s for just this season. According to Larry Coon’s CBA FAQ, the NBA works to ensure teams won’t avoid signing older (and thus more expensive) players by covering some of their contract.
"When a player has been in the NBA for three or more seasons, and is playing under a one-year, 10-day or Rest-of-Season contract at the minimum salary, the league reimburses the team for part of his salary — any amount above the minimum salary level for a two-year veteran. For example, in 2011-12 the minimum salary for a two-year veteran was $854,389, so for a ten-year veteran, with a minimum salary of $1,352,181, the league would reimburse the team $497,792. Only the two-year minimum salary is included in the team salary, not the player’s full salary. They do this so teams won’t shy away from signing older veterans simply because they are more expensive than younger veterans."
That means that Milwaukee will get a check cut by the NBA for around $571,228 if they indeed sign Novak to a one-year deal for veteran minimum, and he’ll only count as $980,431 when Milwaukee’s salaries are determined.