This is a list of NBA contract agreements and rumors that I have put together after reading what many reputable journalists (mainly Marc Stein, Chad Ford, Chris Broussard, Adrian Wojnarowski, Marc J Spears or their sources) have reported throughout the first day of free agency. July 11 is the first day new players can actually sign contracts agreed upon for the 2012-2013 season.
Deron Williams: Honestly, there are more “sources” and “people close to the situation” in regard to D-Will than Dwight Howard’s demands from the Magic. Here’s the thing: Deron Williams has not made a decision yet. That’s the information you can trust. Williams has shown he’s his own man, and when he says he will visit with the Dallas Mavericks and Brooklyn Nets on Monday and then make a decision, that’s what he will do. If you’re expecting to find a leak to a decision before a player makes his official statement, you’ll need to look toward another superstar who forced one of his coaches to be fired (Oh Dwight…).
Joe Johnson: This one’s a little tricky. Even though it is clear that the Brooklyn Nets and Atlanta Hawks are attempting to move Johnson out of Georgia, how they will exactly do this is still up in the air. Even though the six-time All-Star is obviously overpaid as he is finishing up the last year of his 6-year, $119 million contract, he still has put up 18 or more points the last seven seasons and can score in isolation. The Hawks deserve quality pieces (or simply several expiring contracts) in return. The problem? The Nets don’t have attractive players, both on the court and on the paper. Furthermore, Brooklyn is struggling to give up their one somewhat decent piece that the Hawks desire – 23-year-old MarShon Brooks. The most recent story claims the Nets have offered the Hawks Jordan Farmar, Johan Petro, Anthony Morrow, Jordan Williams, DeShawn Stevenson (via sign-and-trade) and a future first-round pick just for Johnson. That would leave Brooklyn with four players on their roster – Johnson, Brooks, Gerald Wallace, and Ilkan Karaman. As is the case with most deals this off-season, this move will rely heavily on Williams’s decision he will soon be making.
Gerald Wallace: Well, even though General Manager Billy King has to figure out how to put together the contracts of Deron Williams, Dwight Howard and possibly Joe Johnson, there’s one man that he knows he will be paying and knows will be crashing down the lane in the Northeast. The Brooklyn Nets and Wallace have agreed on a 4-years, $40 million deal for the slasher. Even though this signing needed to happen so King would not regret everything he has given up for this almost All-Star (but not), it could hurt his chances of bringing in higher level players if Williams decides to stay with his organization.
Omer Asik: His first two seasons may not impress any “numbers crunchers” with 2.9 points and 4.4 rebounds; however, the restricted free agent played with a high level of energy for every single one of his 13.2 minutes he averaged on the floor. The ever-changing Houston Rockets roster might soon have the Turkish 7-footer on their squad after verbally agreeing to a three-year, $25.1 million contract. This deal is done. If the Chicago Bulls have any common sense (which they do), they will not match this extremely lucrative deal for a offensively handicapped big man.
Ray Allen: He might be on the downhill of his career, but don’t let that fool you: this man with the quick release will still have a major impact on the game. His many suitors prove this. The Boston Celtics, Miami Heat, Memphis Grizzlies, Atlanta Hawks, Dallas Mavericks, Los Angeles Clippers and Brooklyn Nets all have reached out to the all-time 3-point scoring leader to convince him to join their winning squad (or in the Nets’ case, potentially winning squad). Whichever team ends up enticing Allen the most will be getting a player that can fit in perfectly with an already established system. Expect him to be a vital contributor wherever he lands next season.
Roy Hibbert: After a breakout season in becoming an All-Star for the first time in his four-year career, Hibbert established himself as one of the very few centers in the league that can legitimately hold his own offensively and defensively. Now, he will soon bring in a huge paycheck because of this ability. The Portland Trail Blazers offered the former Georgetown Hoya the maximum amount he can receive – four years, $58 million. Even though the unrestricted free agent has value with the dearth of commanding big men, the Indiana Pacers will need to think long and hard if they want to match this grand offer.
Eric Gordon: The New Orleans Hornets just drafted the No. 1 overall pick (Anthony Davis) and No. 10 pick (Austin Rivers), setting themselves up with a solid two-man game; however adding the 23-year-old that was the main counterpart to the Chris Paul deal to this duo would take them to another level. Gordon was only able to play nine games last year because he aggravated a pre-existing knee injury. The previous season, though, he averaged 22.3 points in the shadow of super superstar Blake Griffin. The Hornets can match any offer sheet signed by the unrestricted free agent and the teams looking to make an offer include the Indiana Pacers, Houston Rockets, and Phoenix Suns along with the Dallas Mavericks and Charlotte Bobcats, who are at the bottom of the totem pole. This 4-year pro that has a knack for getting to the free throw line has may not be the focus of many NBA offseason storylines. Don’t let this fool you – this kid can play. He is the top shooting guard in this year’s free agency and will most likely earn every penny of his inevitable max contract.
Lavoy Allen: Last year’s postseason allowed the entire nation to see the impact this one-year pro can have on the game without stuffing the stat sheets. He still hit double-digits in scoring three times and grabbed six or more rebounds four times against the Boston Celtics in the Eastern Conference Semifinals. His energy is invaluable. Well, he has decided to stay with the Philadelphia 76ers on a two-year, $6 million contract extension even though the Sixers wanted a four-year commitment. Head coach Doug Collins has constantly praised Allen’s relentless attitude on the court and will be happy to have him back on his squad.
Josh Howard: The man that contributed to the fallout of the Devin Harris/Avery Johnson era in Dallas might be coming back for some redemption. Along with grabbing the attention of the Dallas Mavericks, the 9-year pro might see offers from the Utah Jazz, Los Angeles Lakers, Brooklyn Nets, San Antonio Spurs and Boston Celtics. Howard had flashes where the one-time All-Star looked to be inching closer to his former self but it never really became a consistent level of play. If he could produce anywhere close to the 15-20 points he gave the Mavs for four straight seasons, he could be a financially sound pick-up for any type of team. That possibility, though, looks to be very slim.
Steve Nash: Staying in Phoenix doesn’t seem likely for the 16-year pro. Even though he has a lot of miles on his career, he is coming off an efficient season in which he shot 53.2 percent from the field – the best percentage of any point guard that year by far – while still averaging a double-double (12.5 points, 10.7 assists). Even though the Toronto Raptors, New York Knicks, New Jersey Nets, and Dallas Mavericks have all shown interest, the Raptors are the only one with a concrete offer. They put a three-year, $36 million contract on the table. However, the Knicks are also planning to offer a sign-and-trade that includes Landry Fields in order to bring the passing wizard to Madison Square Garden. Nash knows the Mavs’ main concern revolves solely around Deron Williams and will wait to see how that situation pans out before making a decision. Since Magic Johnson retired, no player has made his teammates better like Nash has throughout his career. Yes, he might be 38, but he can still have this paramount impact.
Jose Calderon: If the Los Angeles Lakers find a way to hold onto Pau Gasol, which might be easier than it seems since they have attempted and failed to trade him away more than the Suns attempted to get rid A’mare Stoudemire, Jose Calderon could be coming to Hollywood land if the Toronto Raptors amnesty his contract to create salary-cap space for Nash. Being in Toronto for his entire seven-year career, Calderon has not received much national attention. Yet, he has put together a solid career so far by averaging at least 10 points and eight assists three of the past five seasons. Also, you can always count on a man that has shot 87.5 percent from the line for his career. If he does in fact go to L.A., as long as expectations don’t rise too high, he will be effective at the point and much more dependable than Ramon Sessions.
Brandon Roy: Retired one day, unrestricted free agent the next. After calling it quits at the end of the 2010-2011 season due to serious knee problems, Roy has decided to give the NBA another shot after receiving the same procedure as Kobe, who has continually discussed how amazing this operation has made his knees feel. Roy has reported that he will only be joining the Chicago Bulls, Dallas Mavericks, Indiana Pacers, Minnesota Timberwolves or Golden State Warriors. With the low financial cost that will go right along with Roy, the risk to sign him is extremely low. If this knee surgery turns out to have turned a corner for Roy, one contending team will have a back-up point guard able to hold his own with any other starting guards. If he fails to completely come back and can’t find his touch, his new team can let him go once his short contract ends.
Marcus Camby: He’s 38 and still attracting NBA teams his way. Why? The ever-so-talked-about “intangibles” comes in a Camby man package everywhere he goes. Why else would six teams be interested in a veteran that averaged career lows in points (3.8)? The unrestricted free agent has made a list consisting of the Miami Heat, San Antonio Spurs, New York Knicks, Dallas Mavericks, Boston Celtics and Houston Rockets. Since the Knicks and Rockets are included in this group, it is difficult to figure out what Camby is looking for in a team. No matter his factors, he will be an excellent veteran presence on and off the court.
Kyle Lowry: The Houston Rockets don’t envision this point guard being a part of the new future that will soon begin for this franchise and Lowry knows it. He has asked the Rockets to remove him from the team as long as unrestricted free agent Goran Dragic remains on the team – which they most likely will. They have already begun talking with the Toronto Raptors and Orlando Magic as possible takers. However, don’t be surprised if the Rockets suddenly change their tune if Dragic ends up going elsewhere. Lowry averaged 14.3 points, 6.6 assists, 4.5 rebounds and 1.6 steals during last season, and as these numbers show, he brought superior diversity to his Houston team. Even though he only stands six feet off the ground, he makes up for it with his pure strength and quickness – a deadly combination. He will take his game to another level next season.
Jamal Crawford: Even though he may be shooter-happy, this man knows how to put the ball in the basket. A lot. The Los Angeles Clippers, Boston Celtics, Minnesota Timberwolves, Phoenix Suns, Philadelphia 76ers and Indiana Pacers quickly became interested in the one-dimensional swingman right when free agency began. The Clippers look to be closest to finalizing a contract. Even though he has a tendency to play even better in crunch time, it’s always risky bringing in Crawford since his style of basketball (little passing, little rebounding, little defense, too much shooting) will only fit in with certain coaches and certain teams.
Andre Miller: After becoming a pure sixth man for the first time in his career last season, Miller has decided to keep this role. He has agreed to re-sign with the Denver Nuggets and will most likely continue to mentor budding point guard Ty Lawson. Miller might not the most athletic, most savvy, most fast-paced guard you can find out there, but this veteran certainly brings an attitude and grit every winning team needs that he has possessed his for 13 years in the NBA.
Jason Terry: It seems as though the JET has to be playing in the Big D or else things just don’t seem right; however, as is the case with every Mav not named Dirk Nowitzki, there is no guarantee Dallas will offer him a contract worth agreeing upon. Along with the Dallas Mavericks, he has already sparked the interest of the Boston Celtics (he might be Ray Allen’s replacement), Memphis Grizzlies, Los Angeles Clippers, and Phoenix Suns. Yes, he might have had his worst season in eight years, but that is still an average of 15.1 points and plenty of clutch, 4th quarter buckets. Don’t sleep on this unrestricted free agent because he will still take the crucial shot on any stage in any city.
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