November 18th is less than a week away. That’s the date the league will have the 2020 NBA draft. As usual, fans all over are googling mock drafts, searching youtube for highlights, doing just about anything to get the latest news. The league office was working diligently to create a protocol. This year will feature the first virtual draft due to covid 19. It airs live on ESPN at 7 pm EST.
Players usually cross the stage shaking hands with the commissioner, brandishing a hat with their new employers’ team logo; but, this year everything will be different for this draft class. The lack of in-person workouts and interviews, along with the cancellation of the NCAA tournament, makes this year tough for prospects looking to gain ground and impress an organization. Even promising young prospects like Lamelo Ball have been rumored to drop out of the top three picks. This is hard to believe since he has been on the team radar since his freshman year of high school.
November 20th is the date free agency is set to kickoff. The NBA and the NBPA agreed to a deal; starting at 6 pm, teams can contact players and begin negotiating contracts though signings won’t be official until the 22nd of November.
General managers and other front-office members will be busy as they’re working around the clock. The draft and free agency are less than two days apart, so this makes for excitement for fans, but the hardworking guys in the suits and ties will play a major role. As you read this they are fine-tuning draft boards, prioritizing targets in free agency, and crunching salary cap numbers. The salary cap this season was finalized at 109.140 million dollars, and the luxury tax will be placed at 132.627 million. The loss of revenue last season played a major role in the cap not rising like in recent years.
December 22nd mark your calendar basketball fans as that’s the start of the 2020/21 NBA season and the guys here at Border Fuel Sports couldn’t be more excited. The league and the players association agreed to a 72 game season; traditionally, the season is 82 games this year, yet it will be shortened due to the extended season that took place.
Exactly a month after free agents can officially sign with their team, some guys will be suiting up. For some who are on teams waiting lists, it could be a lot less time to get acclimated. Everyone won’t be signing on the first day; some will have to see how the chips fall first.
Although teams will try to expedite the process as much as possible, it’s part of the business. For those guys who’ll be coming in the second wave of signings give them time; the first few weeks of the season could be sloppy for teams who made big roster changes. Teams who are bringing back their roster could be victims of circumstances as well as with some teams not playing in almost nine-months while other franchises seem like their season just ended a month ago. Either way, basketball will be back and fans will have something to be excited for.