The Draft Lottery is over and the Draft is still almost a month away. Free agency starts 10 days after the Draft. There’s the Las Vegas Summer League in the middle of free agency and then it’s time to fill out the roster, plan the G League season, etc. So it’s a bit of downtime for the NBA right now, but the WNBA is just getting started. Joe Tsai’s Liberty opens Friday at the Westchester County Center in White Plains.
There’s already been one significant subtraction to our occasional calendar: The NBA has had to cancel the NBA Global Camp next week in Monaco because of conflicts with the French League playoffs. So NBA teams are scrambling, trying to figure out how to get a final look at European prospects.
Otherwise, here ya go. Calendar includes free agent option dates.
May 23 - Final roster cut down for WNBA teams, who carry 12 players.
May 24 — New York Liberty opens WNBA season at Westchester County Center. With the exception of two games —one the exhibition vs. the Chinese Women’s National Team on May 9, the Liberty will play in Westchester this season. Then in 2019-20, they’ll be in new digs. YES Network will broadcast 16 of the Liberty’s 17 home games, starting with the opener, while CBS Sports will handle the other one.
June 14 - No-trade restriction lifts on Spencer Dinwiddie.
June 20 — NBA Draft, Brooklyn, NY. Hope for hometown advantage. Nets currently have the 17th (their own); 27th (Nuggets) and 31st (Knicks) picks. Also, once the draft is concluded, summer league invitations go out to undrafted players.
June 24 - NBA Awards Show — Everything from MVP to All-Rookie Team. D’Angelo Russell is a finalist for Most Improved Player. Sean Marks has a shot at Executive of the Year.
June 29 — Qualifying offer deadline for Rondae-Hollis Jefferson, D’Angelo Russell. By making qualifying offer, the Nets will hold on to their rights, making them restricted free agents. But both have big capholds: $7.4 million for RHJ and $21.1 million for DLo.
June 30 — Contracts for DeMarre Carroll ($15.4 million) and Jared Dudley ($9.5 million) expire. Nets payroll commitment to Dwight Howard ($18.9 million) and Kenneth Faried ($13.3 million) end. Nets still owe one more year of stretch payments ($5.5 million) to Deron Williams.
July 1 — NBA Free Agency begins. Negotiations are not supposed to begin until 6 p.m. the night before, but signings get announced minutes after midnight. Restricted free agents can sign an offer sheet.
July 1 — Teams can also extend players on rookie contracts. In the Nets case, that means they can lock up Caris LeVert to a long-term contract beginning in the 2020-21 season. The Nets have until October 21 to make LeVert an extension.
July 5-July 15 — NBA Summer League, Las Vegas. All 30 teams will be represented. Jarrett Allen has said he plans on playing. One question: will Brooklyn bring in any of their three stashes — Isaia Cordinier (France); Aleksandr Vezenkov (Bulgaria) or Juan Pablo Vaulet (Argentina)? All are playing well.
July 6 — July moratorium ends (12 noon ET). Teams can begin officially signing players, extending players, and completing trades. The Nets could have enough for at least one, maybe two, max players, depending on what they do at the deadline among other things.
The 48-hour moratorium begins on offer sheets signed by restricted free agents.
July 10 - Team option deadline for Shabazz Napier ($1.8 million) and Treveon Graham ($1.6 million). Options can be declined earlier that the deadline, but the late deadline affords the Nets an opportunity of wait and see whether they’ll need to move money for big free agents.
July 27 - WNBA All-Star Game, Las Vegas
August 6 - WNBA Trade Deadline
August 11 - Liberty return to Barclays Center for their only regular season game in Brooklyn vs. the Seattle Storm.
August 31-September 15 - FIBA World Cup, China. No word on who might be playing or not playing for their national teams among Nets players, stashes — or future picks. Latvia (Rodions Kurucs) and Bosnia (Dzanan Musa) didn’t qualify so they won’t be participating. Will Weaver, the former Long Island head coach, is an assistant coach for the Australian national team.
September 8 - Last day of WNBA regular season.
September 11 - WNBA playoffs begin.
September 27 — Training camp opens. Teams (like the Nets) who play preseason games overseas get a head start over the other clubs who open their camps three days later.
October 8 - Last possible date for WNBA Finals
October 10-12 — Nets and Lakers travel to China for the NBA China Games where they’ll play two games vs. the Lakers in Shanghai and Shenzhen.
October 21 - Last day the Nets can extend Caris LeVert to a rookie extension.