The collective bargaining agreement has an assortment of rules governing trades that can make it quite a headache for NBA executives to pull one off. Teams have to be cognizant of where they stand relative to the salary cap and structure the deal so it fits the league’s salary-matching requirements. Further complications exist with players who can veto trades.
Other players simply can’t be dealt at all. Players can’t be traded until three months after they sign a new contract, and with the trade deadline set for February 20th, that puts the following players who signed after November 20th off-limits for a deal:
- Chris Douglas-Roberts, Bobcats
- D.J. Augustin, Bulls
- James Johnson, Grizzlies
- Kendall Marshall, Lakers
- Alexis Ajinca, Pelicans
- Jeremy Tyler, Knicks
- Leandro Barbosa, Suns
- Hedo Turkoglu, Clippers
- Chris Johnson, Celtics
- Andrew Bynum, Pacers
- Luke Babbitt, Pelicans
Teams can’t trade a player for 30 days after they claim him off waivers. The Jazz claimed Malcolm Thomas off waivers from the Spurs on January 25th, but he was already ineligible to be traded because he signed with San Antonio on December 3rd.
Players claimed off amnesty waivers are ineligible to be traded for an entire season, but no one fits that description this year. All of the players waived via the amnesty clause this past summer became free agents, so the Knicks can trade Metta World Peace and the Grizzlies can trade Mike Miller, since they signed as free agents.
Any players who signed 10-day contracts this season are ineligible to be traded, regardless of whether they followed up the 10-day with a contract for the rest of the season. So, Sasha Vujacic, Darius Morris and Shawne Williams, the only players currently on 10-day deals, won’t be changing hands next Thursday. The same goes for any player who signs a 10-day contract between now and the deadline.
There are also three players who CAN be traded at the deadline but can’t be traded now because three months have yet to elapse since they were signed. The trio includes a pair of Sixers who won’t become trade-eligible until the day of the deadline:
Larry Coon’s Salary Cap FAQ was used in the creation of this post.