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July 4, 2015BasketballNBA Free Agency: Winners and Losers Thus Far

Anthony Davis of the New Orleans Pelicans (Photo Via Pelicans Twitter)

Louisville, KY July 4, 2015 (Analyzed Sports) By: Charron Elliott

 New Faces in New Places Versus Loyalty Paying Off

 Although 2014-2015 NBA season has been over for almost a month now, that hasn’t kept the league from getting all the attention this summer. Last week the headline for the NBA was the 2015 NBA draft and this week it has been NBA Free Agency that has gotten the spotlight in the sports world. There have been a lot of moving parts these past few days and a lot of “big money” given out to players some people believe aren’t worthy of it. However those people may not know about the “new money” coming to the NBA over the next few years in huge TV contracts, so these new deals may prove to be bargains later down the road. With all of that said I want to focus on who I think have been the winners and losers in NBA Free Agency thus far. Below is a list of all the contract signings that I am aware of that have happened this week alone in the NBA.

A List of 30 NBA Players Who Have Signed New Contracts This Week :

Anthony Davis: signed with New Orleans Pelicans, five years $145 millionKawhi Leonard: signed with San Antonio Spurs,  five years $90 millionKevin  Love: signed with Cleveland Cavaliers,  five years $110 millionDraymond Green: signed with Golden State Warriors,  five years $85 millionJimmy Butler: signed with Chicago Bulls, five years $95 millionBrook Lopez: signed with Brooklyn Nets, three years $60 millionBrandon Knight: signed with Phoenix Suns, five years $70 millionGoran Dragic: signed with Miami Heat, five years $90 millionDanny Green: signed with San Antonio Spurs, four years $45 millionTristan Thompson: signed with Cleveland Cavaliers, five years $80 millionPaul Millsap: signed with Atlanta Hawks, three years $58 millionKhris Middleton: signed with Milwaukee Bucks, five years $ 70 millionDeMarre Carroll: signed with Toronto Raptors, four years $60 millionThaddeuss Young:signed with Brooklyn Nets, four years $50 millionJae Crowder:signed with  Boston Celtics, five years $35 millionTyson Chandler: signed with Phoenix Suns, four years $52 millionIman Shumphert: signed with Cleveland Cavaliers, four years $40 millionMontae Ellis: signed with Indiana Pacers, four years $44 millionDamian Lillard: signed with Portland Trailblazers, five years $120 millionGreg Monroe: signed with Milwaukee Bucks, three years $50 millionDeAndre Jordan: signed with Dallas Mavericks, four years $80 millionRajon Rondo: signed with Sacramento Kings, one year $10 millionDwayne Wade: signed with Miami Heat, one year $20 millionRobin Lopez: signed with New York Knicks, four years $54 millionMarco Belinelli: signed with the Sacramento Kings, three years $19 millionTobias Harris : signed with the Orlando Magic, four years $64 millionDerrick Williams: signed with the Sacramento Kings, two years $10 millionAl-Farouq Aminu: signed with Portland Trailblazers, four years $30 millionWesley Matthews: signed with Sacramento Kings, four years $64 millionArron Afflalo: signed with New York Knicks, two years $16 million

 

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Kevin Love of the Cleveland Cavaliers. (Photo Via Cleveland Cavaliers Twitter)

Winners: The Biggest winner to me is the New Orleans Pelicans and it is for a very simplistic reason. Anthony Davis is going to be a top five player in the NBA for years to come and they made it a priority to lock him up as quickly as possible. After the Pelicans, would be the Cavaliers and the Spurs. The Cavs have resigned both Kevin Love and Tristan Thompson who are excellent at the power forward spots. Love didn’t have his best season as a pro with the Cavs and LeBron James last year and suffered a shoulder injury in the first round of the NBA Playoffs. However during the Playoffs we saw the development of  Tristan Thompson as a great rebounder and defender in the NBA so locking him was a great move for the Cavs as well. Even if for some reason LBJ decided  to leave Cleveland (again) the Cavs would have Kyrie Irving, Kevin Love, and Tristan Thompson on their roster.

As for the Spurs they secured two of their younger players in the 2014 NBA Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard  and sharpshooter Danny Green. They also have enough salary cap space to sign All-Star free agent LaMarcus Aldridge, who has the Spurs on his top three choices of where he will play next season. The Mavericks getting DeAndre Jordan and the Bucks getting Greg Monroe were also great moves for both teams moving forward.

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Kobe Bryant of the Lakers (left) and Doc Rivers of the Clippers (right).

Losers: The two teams in Los Angeles, the Clippers and the Lakers are my biggest losers in NBA Free Agency. The Lakers had their worst season in franchise history last year, finishing with a regular season record of just 21-61. They did good in the NBA Draft getting the talented rookie guard D’Angelo Russell out of Ohio State, but the Lakers were unable to sway any “big name” free agents to play alongside aging superstar Kobe Bryant. As for the Clippers they will definitely miss the presence of their man in the middle DeAndre Jordan. Although Jordan was a brutal free throw shooter (shot just 39%), he was good for two blocks a game and averaged 15 rebounds a game as well. It won’t be easy for Clippers head coach and team president Doc Rivers to replace the services of a defensive threat like Jordan.

Obviously the last “big name” free agent left to make a decision is LaMarcus Aldridge. Rumors are he’s narrowed his choices down to just three teams his current team the Portland Trailblazers, the Suns, and the Spurs. However if the Trailblazers were to lose Aldridge they would be in my losers category, especially after losing Arron Afflalo , Wesley Matthews, and Nicolas Batum as well. Another thing to keep in mind is that the Memphis Grizzlies and their All-Star Center Marc Gasol have yet to reach a new deal. The same can be said for LeBron James of the Cleveland Cavaliers, but both players are rumored to be looking to re-sign with their current teams.

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