Rest-Of-Season NBA Dates, Deadlines To Watch

With the All-Star Game behind us, we’re preparing for the home stretch of the 2023/24 NBA season. Here are a few noteworthy dates and deadlines to keep an eye on before the playoffs begin in April.

February 29

A team with cap room can renegotiate a player’s current-year salary to give him a raise as part of a contract extension. There are no legitimate candidates for a renegotiation at this point in the season though, since there are only one or two teams that could realistically open up cap room, and they likely aren’t looking to extend anyone.

March 1

  • Last day a player can be waived by one team and remain eligible to appear in the postseason for another team.

As we outline in our glossary entry on buyouts, a player doesn’t need to be signed by March 1 in order to retain his playoff-eligible — he simply can’t be waived after that date. A player who is waived on March 1 and signs with another team on April 8 would be playoff-eligible for his new team, but a player who is waived on March 2 and signs on March 5 wouldn’t be.

March 4

Under the previous Collective Bargaining Agreement, the deadline to sign a player to a two-way contract was January 15, but it has been pushed back in the current CBA and teams are taking full advantage.

In the 15 days since the trade deadline, 11 players have signed new two-way contracts. That number figures to grow ahead of March 4. While there are only two open two-way slots around the NBA right now – with a third about to open up in Chicago – it seems as if at least one or two new openings are being created every day lately as two-way players receive promotions to teams’ standard rosters.

March 11

The Bulls ($10.2MM) and Trail Blazers ($5.8MM) are among the teams that still have available disabled player exceptions, which could be used to sign a player to a rest-of-season contract or to claim a player with an expiring contract off waivers.

However, disabled player exceptions are used more frequently at the trade deadline than after it, and neither Chicago nor Portland has much breathing room below the luxury tax line. The likeliest scenario is that these DPEs will expire without being used.

April 14

  • Last day of the NBA regular season.
  • Last day players can sign contracts for 2023/24.
  • Last day two-way contracts can be converted to standard NBA contracts.
  • Luxury tax penalties calculated based on payroll as of this day.

Several teams around the NBA have at least one open spot on their 15-man rosters. We can probably assume that most – if not all – of those clubs will fill their openings by April 14.

Playoff teams will want to make sure they have as much veteran depth as possible, just to be safe, while lottery teams will look at signing younger players to multiyear deals that include little to no guaranteed money beyond this season in order to get a longer look at them in the summer.

April 15

  • Playoff rosters set (2:00pm CT).

April 16-19

  • NBA play-in tournament.

April 20

  • NBA playoffs begin.

While they wait for the play-in tournament to conclude, the top six teams in each conference will get a few days off between the regular season and the postseason, giving them some time to recharge before the playoffs begin.

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