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NBA Free Agency 2020: 5 Stars with pivotal decisions to make regarding their player option over the next 10 days

Anthony Davis of the LA Lakers
Anthony Davis of the LA Lakers
Kunal Sethi
ANALYST
Modified 11 Nov 2020, 00:51 IST
Top 5 / Top 10
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The NBA and NBPA (National Basketball Players Association) have agreed on an amended Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) ahead of the 2020-21 NBA season, according to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski and Tim Bontemps. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the league is in uncharted territory, with only 71 days between the end of last season and the start of the 2020-21 season. After extended negotiations, the two parties have decided on the 20th of November as the day NBA Free Agency 2020 begins.

The salary cap has increased annually over the last few seasons and was expected to continue its upward trajectory this year. However, because of the complete absence of ticket sales, NBA Free Agency 2020 looks unpredictable.

As a result, NBA players face uncertainty around their futures, especially if their contract is winding down. We take a look at 5 players who have important decisions to make before the start of NBA Free Agency 2020.

NBA Free Agency 2020: Players expected to opt-in

Andre Drummond

Andre Drummond
Andre Drummond

Andre Drummond was traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers by the Detroit Pistons midway through the 2019-20 NBA season. The Pistons decided to commit to a rebuild and dealt Drummond hours before the trade deadline in February this year.

Although Drummond played just eight games for the Cavaliers, he averaged a double-double in rebounds and points while recording 1.4 blocks per game. He has a player option worth $28.7 million in NBA Free Agency 2020 and is likely to sign with the Cavaliers long term.

Gordon Hayward

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Gordon Hayward
Gordon Hayward

One of the biggest names in NBA Free Agency 2020, Gordon Hayward has a $34.1 million player option and is expected to pick up the final year of his contract. Hayward has been crucial for the Boston Celtics and has developed great chemistry with the roster.

Jayson Tatum, Celtics star forward, had this to say about Hayward during the 2020 playoffs,

"Gordon Hayward being healthy means everything for the Celtics.. it's so much better when he's out there with us."

Gordon Hayward's scoring is an integral part of the Celtics' offense and he is expected to opt-in and continue his journey with the title-contenders.

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NBA Free Agency 2020: Players expected to opt-out

Anthony Davis

LeBron James and Anthony Davis
LeBron James and Anthony Davis

2020 NBA Champion, Anthony Davis was vital for the LA Lakers in their path to the title. Davis' player option is the most talked-about contract this offseason. The expectation is that he will decline the player option and sign a new one-year deal that will align his contract with his 'All-NBA First Team' teammate, LeBron James.

Anthony Davis is one of the most in-demand assets in the NBA. There aren't many players who rank as MVP and DPOY candidates each season. The LA Lakers will presumably match any demand that Davis makes in NBA Free Agency 2020. If he does decide to leave, expect every team in the league to battle for his signature.

DeMar DeRozan

DeMar DeRozan
DeMar DeRozan
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DeMar DeRozan's decision in the NBA Free Agency 2020 is hard to predict. He has a $27.8 million player option yet several NBA trade rumors link him with a move away from the San Antonio Spurs. The latest NBA trade rumors suggest he is unsettled in Texas after an anonymous agent spoke to The Athletic,

"DeMar doesn't like San Antonio and doesn't want to be there."

Multiple sources have confirmed this report that DeRozan is unhappy in San Antonio and could use the NBA Free Agency 2020 to seek a trade. However, $27.8 million is a huge sum of money to pass up on, especially in a market that features only three teams projected to match that amount in cap space.

Rajon Rondo

Rajon Rondo
Rajon Rondo

Although Rajon Rondo's contract isn't as large as those of the other listed players, he is one of the biggest names mentioned in the recent NBA trade rumors. Several teams are pursuing Rondo in NBA Free Agency 2020 and for good reason. His vision and playmaking helped elevate the LA Lakers' game as they won the 2020 NBA title.

Rondo has been described as the quintessential point guard. The former Boston Celtics star is selfless in possession, always puts his teammates first, looks for openings, and gets everyone involved. He was described as an "on-court coach" for the LA Lakers and his $2.7 million player option can be matched by multiple contending teams.

Published 10 Nov 2020, 23:59 IST
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