NBA Free Agency: What We Know And What Is Coming
On June 30th, teams in the NBA were allowed to start negotiating contracts, kicking off the start of free agency. While there weren’t many block-buster players up for negotiation, there were still plenty of headline-making deals.
For Cleveland, the Cavaliers decided on a new two-year, $32 million contract with guard Caris LeVert. Last season, LeVert had 127 3-point shots and a 39.2 3-point percentage, both career highs.
The Cavs also received Damian Jones from the Utah Jazz. Jones normally averages 5.2 points, 3.4 rebounds and 0.4 assists per year, but last season his 3-point percentage increased from 38.3 to 58.8. Free agents Ty Jerome and Max Strus were also signed for a two-year, $5 million contract and a four-year $63 million contract, respectively.
Finally, the Cavs were involved in a three-team trade which sent small forward Cedi Osman and forward Lamar Stephens to San Antonio. Osman had played on the team since the 2017-2018 season with a career average of 9.7 points, 3.0 rebounds and 2.3 assists per game with a 35.3 3-point percentage. The Cavs also signed Georges Niang to a three-year, $26 million dollar deal.
Outside of the Cavs’ roster shake-up, other teams made headlines. Kyrie Irving re-signed with the Dallas Mavericks for a three-year, $126 million contract, Kyle Kuzma agreed to a four-year, $102 million deal with the Washington Wizards and Draymond Green agreed to a four-year, $100 million deal with the Golden State Warriors.
The Memphis Grizzlies also agreed to take former New York Knicks guard Derrick Rose with a two-year contract. The Grizzlies said they want to use Rose on the court more than he was on the Knicks, as well as making him “a leader in the locker room.”
The revamped Los Angeles Lakers have made several splashes, including Cam Reddish, bringing back Austin Reaves and D'Angelo Russell, as well as landing Gabe Vincent and Taurean Prince.
Damian Lillard has been drawing the most conversation with his request to be traded from the Portland Trailblazers. Lillard has been on the Trailblazers since he was drafted in 2012 but is favoring Miami as a possible destination.
The Blazers general manager Joe Cronin said that the organization is willing to wait ‘months’ to get just the right movement, choosing not to jump the gun and see how things play out.
This year’s free agency has been a steady one with many high-profile players remaining with their respective teams. Lillard’s trade request has definitely been the most notable event to happen, and it’ll be interesting to see how long it’s stretched out.
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