Teams can pour tens of millions into their starting lineups, but does that money really buy greatness?
The priciest units feature at least one max or near-max deal, and those eight-figure salaries tend to go to the best players. However, there are always misfires in free-agent negotiations, so some guys who haven't quite worked out as planned are propelling their respective teams up this list.
NBA rosters are necessarily top-heavy, and no team has ever won a championship without paying the luxury tax since its inception. In theory, any franchise included here should be aiming to win now, but that won't be the case for everyone.
For consistency's sake, the starting fives considered were the ones used in each team's opening game. That means high-salaried guys like Kobe Bryant and Russell Westbrook are not being factored into the equation at this point.
All salary figures per Basketball-Reference.com.