Sunday, July 26, 2015

2015 NBA FREE AGENCY REVIEW: Tiers 1-4



NBA free agency has come and gone. Pretty much all the big names have signed. A few notable players are still available. Two Cleveland players, Tristan Thompson and JR Smith remain on the market. Solid aging vets such as Carlos Boozer, Jason Terry, Tayshaun Prince and Ben Gordon are still available. These seasoned vets can provide depth and leadership to a contender. Aging vets Pablo Prigioni and Samuel Dalembert signed with the Clippers and Mavs respectively.

Some underrated role players like Norris Cole, Nate Robinson, Big Baby Davis and Kelvin Seraphin still have a chance to get multi-year deals by teams with cap space. These teams include Portland, Philly and Denver.


Here is a review of my free agent list and how it played out in regards to salaries. The team they signed with is highlighted along with how it compared to my market projection 




Tier 1: Stars that #1 options on playoff teams 

Aldridge is the only player in this tier that left his previous team. All players received max deals. No real surprises here. 

1. LEBRON JAMES

Re-signed with CLEVELAND 
SF #1 
6-4/250
AGE: 30
Possible Destinations: Re-sign with CLV
Market Value:
Superstar Max Deal, 35% of the cap 

CONTRACT: 2 yr(s) / $46,974,673 

AVERAGE SALARY: $23,487,337 


2. LAMARCUS ALDRIDGE

Signed with San Antonio 
PF (1-3) 
6-11/240
AGE: 30
Possible Destinations: SA, LAL, DAL, PHO, TOR, Re-sign with POR 
Market Value:
Superstar Max Deal, 30% of the cap 

CONTRACT: 4 yr(s) / $84,072,030

AVERAGE SALARY: $21,018,008

3. MARC GASOL

Resigned with MEMPHIS
C (1-3) 
7-1/265
AGE: 30
Possible Destinations: Re-sign with MEM
Market Value:
Superstar Max Deal, 30% of the cap 

CONTRACT:5 yr(s) / $113,211,750

AVERAGE SALARY: $22,642,350




Tier 2: High end young restricted free agent stars (all are very unlikely to leave current team)  

All of these young stars cashed in with their first big pay day. Draymond Green took a little less than Kawhi Leonard and Jimmy Butler. 


4. KAWHI LEONARD

Re-signed with San Antonio
SF (3-5)
6-7/230
AGE: 24
Possible Destinations: Re-sign with SA
Market Value:
Under 6 years Max Deal, 25% of the cap

CONTRACT: 5 yr(s) / $94,343,126

AVERAGE SALARY: $18,868,625


5. JIMMY BUTLER

Re-signed with Chicago
SG (2-5)
6-7/220
AGE: 25
Possible Destinations: Re-sign with CHI
Market Value:
Under 6 years Max Deal, 25% of the cap 

CONTRACT: 5 yr(s) / $92,339,878 

AVERAGE SALARY: $18,467,976

6. DRAYMOND GREEN

Re-sign with Golden State
PF (4-8)
6-7/240 
AGE: 25
Possible Destinations: Re-sign with GS
Market Value:
Under 6 years Max Deal, 25% of the cap 

CONTRACT: 5 yr(s) / $82,000,000

AVERAGE SALARY: $16,400,000 


Tier 3: Number two scorers/high end role players


Kevin Love and DeAndre Jordan received contracts that pay them as much as the tier one guys. Both Tim Duncan and Danny Green took less money to stay with the Spurs. With the addition of Aldridge, the Spurs are now the favorites to win the title in 2016. 


7. KEVIN LOVE 

Re-signed with CLEVELAND
PF (4-8)
6-10/243
AGE: 26
Possible Destinations: Re-sign with CLV, LAL, POR
Market Value:
Near Max Deal, seeking 30% of the cap max deal, 
Got Max Deal 

CONTRACT: 5 yr(s) / $113,211,750

AVERAGE SALARY: $22,642,350

8. DEANDRE JORDAN

Re-signed with the LOS ANGELES CLIPPERS 
C (3-7)
7-0/265
AGE: 27 in July
Possible Destinations: Re-sign with LAC, DAL, LAL, MIL, NY
Market Value:
Near Max Deal, seeking 30 % of the cap max deal
Got Max Deal 

CONTRACT: 4 yr(s) / $87,616,050

AVERAGE SALARY: $21,904,013




9. GORAN DRAGIC

Re-signed with Miami
PG (6-13) 
6-3/190
AGE: 29
Possible Destinations: Re-sign with MIA, DAL, LAL, NY 
Market Value:
Near Max Deal, 18.0 to 19.0 average, signed for less than market value 

CONTRACT: 5 yr(s) / $85,002,250

AVERAGE SALARY: $17,000,450

10. PAUL MILLSAP

Re-signed with Atlanta
PF (6-12)
6-8/246
AGE: 30
Possible Destinations: Re-sign with ATL, Utah, BOS, ORL 
Market Value:
Near Max Deal, 16.0 to 17.0 average, got 3 million more than I expected 

CONTRACT: 3 yr(s) / $60,216,100

AVERAGE SALARY: $20,072,033


11. GREG MONROE

Signed with Milwaukee 
C (6-8), PF (9-12) 
6-11/250
AGE: 25
Possible Destinations: NY, BOS, LAL, MIL, POR
Market Value:
Under 6 years Max Deal, 25% of the cap, signed for just under that amount  

CONTRACT: 3 yr(s) / $51,437,513

AVERAGE SALARY: $17,145,838



12. BROOK LOPEZ
Re-signed with Brooklyn 
C (8-10) 
7-0/275
AGE: 27
Possible Destinations: Re-sign with BRK, MIL
Market Value:
Seeking a deal with a 20 million average, got 1 million more than that

CONTRACT: 3 yr(s) / $63,497,025

AVERAGE SALARY: $21,165,675

13. DWYANE WADE-MIAMI HEAT 
Re-signed with Miami
SG (4-7) 
6-4/220
AGE: 33
Possible Destinations: Re-sign with MIA 
Market Value:
Seeking a deal with a 16 million average, got 4 million more yet surprisingly signed only a one year deal

CONTRACT: 1 yr(s) / $20,000,000

AVERAGE SALARY: $20,000,000



14. TIM DUNCAN
Re-signed with San Antonio
PF or C (6-10) 
6-11/250
AGE: 39
3 year games played average: 73.3
Possible Destinations: Re-sign with SA
Market Value:
May take Vet minimum to have the Spurs sign Aldridge, took a mid-level deal AND the Spurs got 

CONTRACT: 2 yr(s) / $10,850,000

AVERAGE SALARY: $5,425,000


15. MONTA ELLIS
Signed with Indiana 
SG (4-7)
6-3/185
AGE: 29
Possible Destinations: Re-sign with DAL, ATL, IND, POR 
Market Value:
Good shooting guard, somewhere between Andre Iguodala's 4 year/48 million and Eric Gordon's 4 year/58 million,
Signed for less than both of those deals, but will have a great role on a playoff team in Indiana

CONTRACT: 4 yr(s) / $43,981,000

AVERAGE SALARY: $10,995,250




16. TYSON CHANDLER
Signed with Phoenix 
C (8-13) 
7-1/245
AGE: 32
Possible Destinations: Re-sign with DAL, LAL, ATL, LAC (sign and trade), PHO wasn't on my list
Market Value:
Good role playing center: 12.0 average Marcin Gortat and Nic Vucevic, got 1 million more than that 

CONTRACT: 4 yr(s) / $52,000,000 
AVERAGE SALARY: $13,000,000 

17. DEMARRE CARROLL

Signed with Toronto
SF (11-17)
6-8/212
AGE: 28
Possible Destinations: Re-sign with ATL, NY, DET, BOS 
Market Value:
Defensive small forward, Nic Batum 4 year/46 million, seeking something around 4 years/50 million, got 2 million more per year than I predicted 

CONTRACT: 4 yr(s) / $58,000,000

AVERAGE SALARY: $14,500,000

18. DANNY GREEN
Re-signed with SAN ANTONIO
SG (8-12)
6-6/210
AGE: 28
Possible Destinations: DAL, ATL, NY, I didn't even think re-signing with SA was a possibility 
Market Value:
Good shooting guard, somewhere between Andre Iguodala's 4 year/48 million and Eric Gordon's 4 year/58 million 
This was the best value deal in all of free agency. It is absolutely INSANE that 26 other free agents signed larger contracts per year than him. 

CONTRACT: 4 yr(s) / $40,000,000

AVERAGE SALARY: $10,000,000


Tier 4: Restricted good young role players


19. BRANDON KNIGHT
Re-signed with PHOENIX
SG (8-12), PG (14-18)
6-3/189
AGE: 23
Possible Destinations: Re-sign with PHO
Market Value:
Seeking 5 year deal around 13-14 million average 

CONTRACT: 5 yr(s) / $70,000,000
AVERAGE SALARY: $14,000,000

20. KHRIS MIDDLETON
Re-signed with MILWAUKEE
SG (11-16), SF (11-17)
6-7/225
AGE: 24
Possible Destinations: Re-sign with MIL 
Market Value:
Good shooting guard, somewhere between Andre Iguodala's 4 year/48 million and Eric Gordon's 4 year/58 million, just under the 14.5 million average of Eric Gordon 

CONTRACT: 5 yr(s) / $70,000,000
AVERAGE SALARY: $14,000,000

21. REGGIE JACKSON
Re-signed with DETROIT
PG (17-24)
6-3/208
AGE: 25
Possible Destinations: Re-sign with DET
Market Value:
Seeking 5 year deal around 12-14 million average, got 2 million more than my projection. John Wall isn't too happy about it  


CONTRACT: 5 yr(s) / $80,000,000
AVERAGE SALARY: $16,000,000

22. TOBIAS HARRIS
Re-signed with ORLANDO
SF (11-17), PF (16-20) 
6-9/235
AGE: 23
Possible Destinations: Re-sign with ORL, BOS, DET  
Market Value:
Good young small forward, somewhere between Nic Batum's 4 year/46 million and Rudy Gay's 3 year/40 million, got 16 million per season, over 2.6 million more per year than Gay  

CONTRACT: 4 yr(s) / $64,000,000
AVERAGE SALARY: $16,000,000

23. TRISTAN THOMPSON-CLEVELAND CAVALIERS
Still unsigned
PF (17-20)
6-10/238
AGE: 24
Possible Destinations: Re-sign with CLV
Market Value:
Seeking 5 year deal around 12-13 million average 

24. ENES KANTER 
Re-signed with OKLAHOMA CITY
C (15-20)
6-11/245
AGE: 23
Possible Destinations: Re-sign with OKC, MIL, LAL, BOS
Market Value:
Good role playing center: 12.0 average Marcin Gortat and Nic Vucevic

The Thunder had to match big offer that Portland made him.
Kanter was one of the biggest winners in free agency. At 17.5 million per year he will be the 5th highest paid center in the league. Only Dwight Howard, Marc Gasol, DeAndre Jordan and Brook Lopez will make more than him

CONTRACT: 4 yr(s) / $70,060,026
AVERAGE SALARY: $17,515,007

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