According to Marc Stein of ESPN, NBA teams can begin courting free agent players starting this Monday, Dec. 5, at 10:00 a.m. ET.
Teams will not be able to sign players until training camps officially open Dec. 9. Stein is also reporting that all 30 teams were notified Saturday that contact with players, including free agents, will be allowed Monday.
However, there are still several restrictions still in place due to the continuing lockout. Even though a tentative deal has been reached and the lockout is expected to officially end sometime next week, the league is still warning teams about what is and is not permitted.
Stein’s sources reportedly are telling him that coaches are still unable to supervise on-court workouts before camp begins next Friday. Still, teams are allowed to give physical exams to free agents.
As for the official end of the lockout, it appears the league is inching closer to finalizing the agreement.
“Earlier Saturday, ESPN The Magazine’s Ric Bucher reported that NBA commissioner David Stern and NBA Players Association executive director Billy Hunter have been negotiating the remaining fine points of the league’s tentative labor for the past two days and are scheduled to resume Monday after taking Sunday off.”*
Hunter stated that if everything goes well the deal should be presented to the players on Wednesday in New York. If the players vote yes on the deal next Thursday than camps will open as tentatively scheduled the following day, Friday, Dec. 9.