Draft Notes: Two-Day Format, Sandfort, Penda, Early Entrants

The NBA will hold a two-day draft for the first time this year, but the concept has been batted around for over a decade, according to Jeremy Woo of ESPN, who hears from a team source that a group executives first presented the idea to the league in 2011. Extending the second round to give teams more than two minutes per pick was one important reason for the change, as Woo details.

“Way more second-round picks would be traded every year, except (due to the lack of time between picks) no one knows who has them,” one Eastern Conference executive told Woo. “A team makes a trade, then another trade. I’m spending 10 minutes hunting down picks, and by the time you find out where it is, it’s too late to make a deal.”

“… The second round is not fun. Chaos. Insanity. Not how we should be running our business. This will solve that. We didn’t need a second day, we just needed a longer second round — but I understand we can’t start at 3 p.m. or finish at 3 a.m., so this is a good solution.”

The second round of the draft will get its own day this June and there will be four minutes per pick instead of two. The hope is that, in addition to giving front offices more time to consider their options – including potential deals – the second night of the draft will allow the league’s broadcast partners to better spotlight the 28 players being selected in round two.

“The second round has become more and more important,” NBA head of basketball operations Joe Dumars told ESPN. “Rosters have expanded, and you’re seeing a larger influx of talent into the league, a lot of times from the second round. (The one-day format) was not doing justice for the second-round picks and the teams.”

While it remains to be seen exactly how adding an extra day to the draft may change teams’ strategies, sources who spoke to Woo suggested they wouldn’t be surprised if there’s more action than usual during the final few picks of the first round – as teams look to land players before rivals get a chance to reset their boards – and the first few picks of the second round, after clubs have had 24 hours to consider their options.

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