NBA Teams With Open Roster Spots

A total of 46 players were traded on deadline day last Thursday, and more have been waived and signed since then, resulting in major roster upheaval around the NBA.

With the dust settling a little, it’s worth checking in on which teams across the league now have open roster spots, and which clubs will need to fill at least one of those openings soon in order to meet the minimum roster requirements.

Let’s dive in…

Teams with two open spots on their 15-man rosters:

  • Golden State Warriors
  • Los Angeles Clippers
  • Miami Heat
  • New Orleans Pelicans
  • New York Knicks
  • Portland Trail Blazers
  • Toronto Raptors

The NBA allows team to carry fewer than 14 players on standard (or 10-day) contracts for up to two weeks at a time. So these clubs are allowed to have just 13 for now, but will soon need to add a 14th, either with a 10-day signing or a rest-of-season addition.

The Warriors, Heat, Trail Blazers, and Raptors all dipped below 14 players on deadline day (March 25), so they’ll all have until next Thursday (April 8) to get back up to the required roster minimum. The Knicks will have even longer, since they just waived Terrance Ferguson and Vincent Poirier on Sunday — they’ll have to add a 14th man by April 11.

The Pelicans and Clippers, meanwhile, reduced their roster counts to 13 players on March 20 and March 22, respectively, so they’ll need to make their moves sooner. New Orleans will have to add a player by this weekend at the latest, while the Clippers will do so by next Monday.

The Pels are right up against the luxury tax line, so they’ll likely sign someone to a 10-day contract. The Clippers have enough breathing room below their hard cap to complete a rest-of-season signing if they so choose.

Teams with one open spot on their 15-man rosters:

  • Cleveland Cavaliers
  • Indiana Pacers
  • Los Angeles Lakers
  • Memphis Grizzlies
  • Milwaukee Bucks
  • Minnesota Timberwolves
  • Orlando Magic

A report last Thursday indicated that the Pacers were signing Oshae Brissett, but they still have completed that 10-day deal, so they have an open roster spot for now. The Bucks technically have two open roster spots as of this writing, but are expected to sign Jeff Teague to fill one of them as soon as today.

The Lakers, Grizzlies, Timberwolves, and Magic all have 14 players on standard, rest-of-season contracts, with no obligation to fill their 15th spots anytime soon. The Cavaliers currently have 14th man Quinn Cook on a 10-day contract. When his deal expires on Wednesday night, the team will dip to 13 players and will have two weeks to re-add a 14th.

Teams with open two-way contract slots:

  • Minnesota Timberwolves
  • Oklahoma City Thunder
  • Phoenix Suns
  • Portland Trail Blazers

The Thunder opened up one of their two-way slots when they promoted Moses Brown to the standard roster over the weekend. I’d expect them and the Timberwolves to be more interested in filling their open two-way spots than the Suns and Trail Blazers. Oklahoma City and Minnesota are lottery teams and could benefit from a look at one more young player, while Phoenix and Portland are playoff clubs that have shown no desire to add a second two-way player all season long.

Also worth mentioning:

  • Brooklyn Nets
  • Detroit Pistons
  • San Antonio Spurs

The Nets, Spurs, and Pistons currently have full 15-man rosters, but won’t for much longer, as all three teams have players on 10-day contracts. Alize Johnson‘s deal with Brooklyn runs through Wednesday, while Cameron Reynolds‘ with San Antonio runs through Sunday and Tyler Cook‘s with Detroit expires after next Tuesday.

Note: Our full roster count breakdown can be found right here.

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