2019 NBA Free Agency Primer: Top 20 available free agents, rumors, start date and everything to know

2019 NBA Free Agency Primer: Top 20 NBA Free Agents, Start Date & Time
2019 NBA Free Agency Primer: Top 20 NBA Free Agents, Start Date & Time

On one hand, the 2018-19 NBA season is going to conclude soon. On the other hand, the frenzy of free agency is going to heat up. Change is the head-coaching has been seen in a number of teams. NBA Draft is coming next in the line. However, the most-arguable task in the offseason is about to happen. (Check: WWE PPV 2019.)

Each team is looking forward to improving itself, and free agency is just the opportunity for the same. It’s going to start in less than a month now. There have a number of rumors before its actual start. This year’s free agent crop will feature top-tier talents including superstars like Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, and Kawhi Leonard among others.

Several teams like Knicks, Nets, and Clippers have got many slots to use. It means that several high profile players will be seen wearing different jerseys than they are now. There is speculation that Durant may join NY Knicks or LA Clippers after leaving Warriors. Other report say that Durant and Leonard are inclined to Brooklyn Nets.

2019 NBA Free Agency Primer: Top 20 NBA Free Agents, Start Date & Time
2019 NBA Free Agency Primer: Top 20 NBA Free Agents, Rumors, Start Date & Time

Future Hall-of-Famer LeBron James has announced that he would like another superstar to join him in LA. It is being said that he is seriously considering recruiting Jimmy Butler and Leonard. Given that free agency is exciting, but there are some tricky ins-and-outs details with it.

We are here to help you in understanding all those details, and answer some frequently-asked-questions (FAQ) before it starts. Below, we have the top 20 potential free agents, out of the list, you can figure out which player fits your team best.

When does NBA free agency start? Date

It will take place on June 30, 2019, Monday at 6 pm ET. After that the players will be free to discuss their future with teams they like on a potential contract. However, not all (except few) will be allowed to sign the contracts until noon on July 6.

What is the Moratorium period?

It is the period in which no contract would be signed during the negotiation period between June 30 and July 6. It is the rule designed to allow both teams and players to fully think through their decisions before actually going to sign the contract papers. There are a few exceptions to this.

Let’s first take a look at the top NBA free agents.

Who are this summer’s top free agents?

  • PO: Player option
  • TO: Team option
  • UFA: Unrestricted free agent
  • RFA: Restricted free agent

2019’S TOP 20 NBA FREE AGENTS

RANK PLAYER POS LAST TEAM NEW TEAM STATUS
1
Kevin Durant (30)
F
PO
2
Kawhi Leonard (27)
F
PO
3
Kyrie Irving (27)
G
PO
4
Kemba Walker (29)
G
UFA
5
Klay Thompson (29)
G
UFA
6
Kristaps Porzingis (23)
F
RFA
7
DeMarcus Cousins (28)
C
UFA
8
Jimmy Butler (29)
G
PO
9
Nikola Vucevic (28)
C
UFA
10
Tobias Harris (26)
F
UFA
11
Khris Middleton (27)
F
PO
12
D’Angelo Russell (23)
G
UFA
13
JJ Redick (34)
G
UFA
14
Malcolm Brogdon (26)
G
RFA
15
Al Horford (33)
C
PO
16
Marc Gasol (34)
C
PO
17
Julius Randle (24)
F
PO
18
Brook Lopez (31)
C
UFA
19
DeAndre Jordan (30)
C
UFA
20
Bojan Bogdanovic (30)
F
UFA

What kinds of signings can take place during the Moratorium?

Some contracts are allowed to be signed during the July Moratorium as per the exception to the rule. Here are some guidelines explaining the NBA CBA FAQ.

  • Teams may sign their first-round draft picks (to a standard rookie “scale” contract).
  • A second-round draft pick can accept a required tender, which is a one-year contract offer teams must submit to retain their rights to the player.
  • A restricted free agent can accept a qualifying offer from his prior team.
  • A restricted free agent finishing the fourth season of his rookie “scale” contract can accept a maximum qualifying offer.
  • A restricted free agent may sign an offer sheet with a new team, although the 48-hour matching period does not begin until the conclusion of the Moratorium.
  • Teams may sign players to minimum salary contracts for one or two seasons, with no bonuses of any kind.
  • Teams may sign players to Two-Way contracts, convert a Two-Way contract to a standard NBA contract, or convert a standard NBA contract with an Exhibit 10 to a Two-Way contract.
  • Teams may waive players or claim players waived by other teams.

Can players agree to contract terms during the Moratorium?

Yes, they can and they always do. This time period was signed to get them sufficient time before hitting pen to paper. During this period, the free agent decisions are taken care via verbal agreements. Then, they can begin preparing with their new teams. It results into a less stressful summer to both the teams and players.

Are verbal agreements made during the Moratorium binding?

No, clearly, they aren’t. Any agreement without pen are just promises that can be broken as per one’s situation. Both teams and players are given the ability to back on them. However, cancellation rarely happens. The most recent major example came in 2015 when DeAndre Jordan rejected the proposal with Mavericks after being held hostage by Clippers in his Houston home.

What’s the difference between restricted vs unrestricted free agents?

Unrestricted free agents mean those players can sign with any team freely as per their will. Their previous teams has no rights to them. Restricted free agents mean those players who can sign offer sheets from other teams, but their previous team has 48 hours to match the terms, therefore retaining the player.

Which teams are expected to be active?

Speaking of the last year, around 80% of NBA teams went over the salary cap, but it seems to be a different story this year. As per a report, there are 12 teams with projected cap space of $20 million or more. Several teams have managed to get enough room for at least one max salary.

Below is the list of teams with the most projected space. These could turn out as the most active during free agency.

  • New York Knicks, $72.9M
  • Los Angeles Clippers, $59.7M
  • Brooklyn Nets, $54.6M
  • Dallas Mavericks, $52.2M
  • Atlanta Hawks, $50.6M
  • Indiana Pacers, $48.8M
  • Los Angeles Lakers, $41.8M

When does free agency end?

It will never end. Players have the right to sign throughout the year if they haven’t found a team by the start of the 2019-20 season.

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