You're rightl sacking them / paying them off means that their contracts are still within the cap - hence Sarries weren't able to do their night of the long knives (though a reasonable number who were told they weren't welcome were still able to secure contracts where they'd feel more loved though).
I THINK that if you have to buy someone out of the remainder of their contract, then it all falls into that year's contract, so eg, if we were to hypothetically buy flats out of 2 years worth of contract at £150k; he'd take up £300k of salary cap, whilst being unavailable to play for us.
Loan agreements are a way around this though; eg Cheeseman & JonnyF; but I'm not sure how much of the salary is offset that way, I'd guess potentially all of it if it's a permanent loan.
I wonder if the current thinking might be for Flats to retire from playing & get a new contract as a front row coach - I imagine this way we could remove his salary from the cap & still keep Flats happy.
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