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2021 NBA free agency: Start date and notable players to follow

(AP Photo / Ben Margot)

As much as basketball fans love watching their respective teams play through the regular season and playoffs, the real magic tends to happen when the NBA’s free agency period rolls around each year.

So, when it was announced that the start of the 2020-2021 season would be delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic and its impacts on the league schedule, many fans’ minds began to wonder about when free agency would start in 2021.

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Those fans got their answer towards the end of the 2020-2021 regular season, as the NBA announced that teams can begin negotiating with free agents on Monday, August 2 at 6 p.m. ET.

Those free agents would then be able to officially sign with teams on Friday, August 6 at 12:01 p.m. ET, per the league’s announcement.

The dates round out a busy summer for the NBA, with the 2021 NBA playoffs running from May 22 until July 22 at the latest, and the 2021 NBA Draft currently scheduled for July 29.

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For reference, the 2019 NBA playoffs, the last held in a normal setting before the COVID-19 pandemic, started on April 13 and ended on June 13. That year’s draft was held on June 20, with free agency starting 10 days later on June 30.

This year’s free agents may not match the caliber of the 2019 class, but there are still some high-profile players to keep up with in 2021.

Los Angeles Clippers forward Kawhi Leonard and Phoenix Suns guard Chris Paul stand out among the laundry list of players prepping for free agency, but there is a wide range of talent for the league’s 30 teams to consider as the year progresses.

This isn’t the comprehensive list of players that are preparing for free agency in 2021, but here are some of the most notable names for you to pay attention to across the league:

  • John Collins, Atlanta Hawks
  • Spencer Dinwiddie, Brooklyn Nets
  • Blake Griffin, Brooklyn Nets
  • Devonte’ Graham, Charlotte Hornets
  • Lauri Markkanen, Chicago Bulls
  • Jarrett Allen, Cleveland Cavaliers
  • Tim Hardaway Jr., Dallas Mavericks
  • Josh Richardson, Dallas Mavericks
  • Kelly Oubre Jr., Golden State Warriors
  • Serge Ibaka, Los Angeles Clippers
  • Kawhi Leonard, Los Angeles Clippers
  • Andre Drummond, Los Angeles Lakers
  • Montrezl Harrell, Los Angeles Lakers
  • Goran Dragic, Miami Heat
  • Kendrick Nunn, Miami Heat
  • Victor Oladipo, Miami Heat
  • Duncan Robinson, Miami Heat
  • Lonzo Ball, New Orleans Pelicans
  • Frank Ntilikina, New York Knicks
  • Derrick Rose, New York Knicks
  • Danny Green, Philadelphia 76ers
  • Chris Paul, Phoenix Suns
  • Carmelo Anthony, Portland Trail Blazers
  • Norman Powell, Portland Trail Blazers
  • Hassan Whiteside, Sacramento Kings
  • DeMar DeRozan, San Antonio Spurs
  • Kyle Lowry, Toronto Raptors
  • Gary Trent Jr., Toronto Raptors
  • Mike Conley, Utah Jazz

Which player are you going to be most interested in when free agency begins in 2021? Let us know by following @SOTSports on Twitter or by liking our Facebook page!

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