With the Trail Blazers season officially coming to an end last week the future we’ve all been gabbing about since the trade deadline is now closer than ever. We’ve been spouting off about the “huge summer” ahead for the organization. A summer that will drastically reshape the team come next season.
But what does that mean exactly? When are all of these changes happening and how? Here’s a breakdown of key dates that will significantly impact the future of the team.
Draft Lottery: Wednesday, May 30, 2012
This is a big day for the Trail Blazers. By not making the playoffs Portland is now in the draft lottery and could potentially end up with TWO top picks. (We own the rights to New Jersey’s pick as long as it’s not 1-3.) If we do indeed end up with two top picks, as opposed to one, the front office will have even more assets to use as chips for movement during the summer. And of course, the higher the picks the more valuable they are.
More on a detailed breakdown of the lottery process coming soon.
Draft Day: Thursday, June 28, 2012
Draft day. This could be the BIGGEST day of the offseason for Portland. Will we have two first round draft picks? Will we keep the picks and draft from this strong class? Will we trade one of the picks? If we have two picks will we package them in a trade? Will this day be the day we make one of the MAJOR offseason moves we’re expected to make?
We’ll all be speculating about how the evening will play out for the next 57 days. We’ll do research, make mock drafts, dream up wish lists and try to rationalize and figure out how it’ll all play out. Fun times!
If you’re ready to start your draft prep you’ll need this list
. It’s all the players who have decided to enter the draft early. (The deadline for early entry was Sunday night at 11:59PM ET. )
Moratorium Period: Sunday, July 1-Tuesday, July 10, 2012
This is the period when Portland can begin to go after free agents from other teams. No official contracts will be signed during the moratorium period, but the wheeling and dealing of contract negotiations will begin. There is no contact with free agents from other teams prior to the beginning of the moratorium. This doesn’t apply to free agents who were on the Trail Blazers roster at the end of the season—restricted or unrestricted—so our front office can still be in contact with any of them though no contract discussions can occur.
Free Agent Contracts Can Be Signed: Wednesday, July 11, 2012
Free agent contracts can be signed beginning on the 11th. It’s time to dust off the Twitter accounts and start visiting all your old bookmarks for Trail Blazers news because Portland will be active on the free agent market and you don’t want to miss any of the action.
Wondering about cap space as it pertains to free agency? That’s another beast entirely, more to come soon so stay tuned.