Commentary

OKC challenging champs on cheap

PER Diem: April 27, 2010

Updated: April 27, 2010, 6:27 PM ET
By John Hollinger | ESPN.com
ThunderNoah Graham/NBAE via Getty The Thunder, who have the lowest payroll in the league, are giving the Lakers a run for their money.

In a year in which eight teams ended up over the luxury-tax line and five contenders in particular -- the Cavaliers, Magic, Celtics, Mavericks and Spurs -- participated in an offseason arms race, it seems rather ironic that the team poised to knock off the mighty Lakers has the league's lowest payroll. Forget the luxury tax: L.A.'s season could end at the hand of a team that is under the salary cap.

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