n. The theory and practice of salary caps in professional sports.
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The dollars will be stacked to the stratosphere for the Michael Jordans and Shaquille O'Neals and the handful of others whose celebrity extends far beyond the game itself.

Or at least they would, but for that which makes free agency not quite so free: the cap.

No use trying to figure out the fine points, since great minds now make a specialization of capology.
—Stephen Brunt, “Salary cap shows NBA's finesse on free agency,” The Globe and Mail, July 10, 1996
Last summer, the Magic restructured the contracts of six players and traded Sam Vincent before signing O'Neal to a 7-year, $40 million contract. His first-year salary was about $3.1 million. Vander Weide said he hopes the first-round pick this year can be signed for some amount between $1.7 million and $2.3 million. But various player agents said it would take between $2 million and $3 million to sign a player such as Webber. O'Neal commanded more because of his talent.

"We wade into another interesting and intricate summer of 'capology,' " Magic General Manager Pat Williams said.
—Barry Cooper, “Magic Mission: Trim $4 Million,” Orlando Sentinel, May 24, 1993
1992 (earliest)
You don't need a PhD in salary capology to understand why. New York's good current position stems from a combination of good cap management, talent acquisition, player cooperation and luck.
—David Aldridge, “Knicks Deserve a Tip of the Cap For Mastery of Salary Strategy,” The Washington Post, September 24, 1992
A salary cap is a maximum dollar amount that a team can spend in one year on player salaries. The caps are usually hideously complex and can often be circumvented by using equally complex legal and monetary machinations—i.e., capology. This discipline is also known in the trade as caprobatics.