LOS ANGELES – The NBA and the National Basketball Players Association came to a mutual agreement on Thursday to shorten the free agency moratorium period, according to a memo sent by the league to team owners, general managers and representatives.
The rule is being unofficially called the "DeAndre Jordan Rule," aptly named for the Los Angeles Clippers center who famously had a change of heart last July during free agency after he initially verbally agreed to sign with the Dallas Mavericks.
Last season, the moratorium period for free agents went from July 1 thru July 11, meaning, that free agents could verbally agree to sign with a team on the first of July, and change their mind before signing their contracts on July 11th. The rule was initially set in place to allow free agents ample enough time to meet with perspective teams before they can sign a contract.
Historically, the moratorium period lasted 10 days, giving the NBA ample time to audit its finances before new contracts came on the books. But after the Jordan debacle, both associations have greed to cut the moratorium period in half.
Theoretically, the shortened moratorium period should dissuade free agents from backing out of verbal agreements a la Jordan, something that should make Mavericks owner Mark Cuba, very happy.
In case you were curious on what NBA players will be hitting free agency this summer, a bevy of NBA All-Stars will be available including, LeBron James, Kevin Durant, Dwayne Wade, DeMar DeRozan, Pau Gasol, Al Horford, Dwight Howard, Mike Conley and Hassan Whiteside.
With the moratorium period shortened, it should make for a fast and furious five days to start July for the NBA and its fans.