Bottom Eight Teams Not Permitted To Start Making Trades

During a typical NBA league year, there’s a freeze on trades between the winter trade deadline and the end of a team’s season in the spring. Once the regular season ends, the 14 non-playoff teams are once again permitted to make trades, with other clubs regaining that ability as they’re eliminated from the postseason.

However, due to the unusual nature of the 2020 NBA calendar, things will look a little different this year. As Bobby Marks of ESPN explains, no teams are currently permitted to make trades, including the bottom eight teams who aren’t participating in the summer restart in Orlando. Even though the offseason has begun for those eight non-Orlando clubs (the Warriors, Timberwolves, Cavaliers, Pistons, Hawks, Knicks, Hornets, and Bulls), a transaction moratorium remains in place for them following last week’s brief transaction window.

According to Marks, the likely outcome is that the league and the players’ union will agree to lift the moratorium once the first round of the playoffs gets underway on August 17. At that point, non-playoff teams – including the six teams in Orlando that don’t make the postseason – would be allowed to make trades, waive players, and sign certain players to contract extensions.

Of course, while non-playoff teams are generally permitted to make trades and other roster moves as soon as the postseason gets underway, we usually don’t see the first trades of the offseason completed until around the time of the draft. So we shouldn’t expect a flurry of moves if the moratorium lifts in August — most of the offseason’s deals will still likely come in October, when the draft and free agent period take place.

For the time being, the only permissible NBA transaction is the signing of a substitute player. The 22 teams participating in the restart can sign a substitute to replace any player who voluntarily opts out or who contracts COVID-19. The player being replaced would subsequently become ineligible for the rest of the season.

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16 thoughts on “Bottom Eight Teams Not Permitted To Start Making Trades

  1. Sillivan

    Good News!
    The 14 non-playoff teams are permitted to make trade starting on August 16?

  2. nentwigs

    Of the full complement of NBA teams the 8 teams that performed so poorly that they are not given an opportunity to participate in the summer restart in Orlando, (the Warriors, Timberpuppies, Cavaliers, Pistons, Hawks, Knicks, Hornets, and Bulls), are precisely the teams that should be exempt from any transaction moratorium due to their substandard performance.

    • datrain021

      Agreed. They are already hurt by losing out on games and practices to improve their young players and now this. Reminds me why I don’t watch the NBA

  3. Robert G.

    Luke, are any transactions that happen before October part of the 19-20 season? When does the 20-21 season start? I’m interested in whether the T-Wolves still have an opportunity to get below the tax line this year. They are only $515k over now, and Britt Robson and others were expecting them to make a move to get out of the tax line now, so they don’t get hit with repeater tax next year. Any insights there?

    • Luke Adams

      The 2020/21 league year won’t technically begin until October 19, but luxury tax calculations will be based on where team salaries stood as of the end of the day on June 30, so it seems as if the Timberwolves didn’t end up trying to get out of the tax after all (with no trades allowed last week, their only option would’ve been waiving someone and hoping he was claimed — maybe they didn’t consider that worth the risk).

  4. coachtim

    You’ve been shunned! Get your participation trophy and go home. Thx for playing. See ya next season.

  5. Alex Ashton

    I don’t post either. Maybe we should start up a separate Board for non-posters. Shouldn’t require much server space.

  6. Alex Ashton

    Once the 14 teams in the Lottery are set and trading is allowed, I think the Dubs should look into swapping down, with the team that swaps dealing a player or two to the Dubs under their TPE in compensation. It would presumably have to remain hypothetical until the Lottery is run and the teams all know their actual spots in the Draft, but I think the Dubs could do just fine in the #8 – #14 spot and get a solid backup or two under the TPE as well.

    • x%sure

      Agree, not sure that Bob Myers will find a favorite to gun for, but would do well with Vassell if he doesn’t change his tune from the last few drafts… or one of the traditional physical centers like Stewart WAS, Uturo MIN, Azabuike KAN, or Tillman MicSt.

      BTW you’re allowed to post on other pages, also!

  7. KnickerbockerAl

    Nothing ever happens till draft anyway. So who cares YAWN !! This draft should bring a few trades. And even though it’s not star heavy. It means players can drop. And a nice talent can be found outside lottery or 8-15. I’m sure of it. You look at Achiuwa, Carey, Stewart. All bigs who IMO are all 4s who can play small ball center. All are expected outside the lottery. Except maybe Achiuwa. I think all three can be starting PFs. This yr also means. The lottery players maybe will just be rotation players. So in a draft like this. Even bottom half of first rd. Is a good place to be. Knicks have 3 picks in top 37. So that’s why I’m pumped. All three can be descent players. I’m good with that. Vernon Carey is a solid player. Whoever gets him will be glad.

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