Int’l Free Agency – Cannot Trade Recently Signed Players

Players Signed via International Amateur Free Agency Not Eligible To Be Traded Until Following Year IFA Begins


In a recent Happy Hour, it was suggested that teams could be working on finding ways to avoid dealing with the rules of a hard cap of $5,000,000.

In response to this discussed action, the League Office is implementing the following:

“ANY player signed via the International Amateur Pool in 2018, is NOT ELIGIBLE to be traded until July 1, 2019 (the “start” of the 2019 IFA period [give or take a few days, but the July 1 stands firm]).”

Why is this being done?

Think of it this way, a team discovers a young 16-20 year old foreign player. The team and player discuss how the player fits their future, they develop a relationship, trust is built between the front-office, scouts, coaches the player will learn from, a “pledge” is made and a player signs.

If a team were to trade a player two days later, prospects of this sort will learn of the team’s behavior and refuse to sign with said organization. Unfortunately, this is something the game does not recognize.

In addition, the hard cap is just that, a hard cap. Decisions must be made with how to spend the designated money everyone is given.

If players go unsigned, players return to the pool the following year. There is nothing wrong with that.

What about the CBA & trading for more money?

Frankly the real-life CBA is rather complicated and complex. It takes into a account quite a bit, all of which the game is currently not able to handle.

That said, the league office will look into a system that could be used for 2019. For now though, the 2018 system will stand by the strict $5 million limit and will strongly enforce the no trading of Int’l Signings until the date above in 2019.