It’s been a wild first day of Free Agency with almost all marquee players committed to new contracts. Only one player will take his time, and that is the reigning Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard. There was a lot of movement and major extensions signed, let’s take a look at some of the more surprising developments from last night. We will cover those we didn’t predict in our preview.
Brooklyn Nets signed:
Kevin Durant, 4 year – $164 million
Kyrie Irving, 4 year – $148 million
DeAndre Jordan, 4 year – $40 million
The Nets are arguably the biggest winners of Free Agency. Despite KD’s injury, this is a major success for a franchize that’s been scarred by the Pierce/Garnett trade for so long. They will be a relevant playoff team in ’19/’20 and a Finals contender in ’20/’21.
Philadelphia 76ers signed:
Tobias Harris, 5 year – $180 million
Al Horford, 4 year – $109 million
*working on an extension with Ben Simmons
The Sixers lost Butler but added Horford. Jimmy was a force in the playoffs but expected a five-year max contract that was too rich for Philly. They committed to a 26-year-old Harris. They used the available cap space to bring in Horford. While he is also on the wrong side of 30, this is significantly less than what Butler was expecting. The fit is even better, he will start as a four but can step in at the five when Embiid needs to rest or is unavailable.
New Orleans Pelicans:
J.J.Redick, 2 year – $26.5 million
Nicolo Meli, 2 year – $8 million
*exploring bringing Derrick Favors in
So it turns out having a competent, independent GM is good for you. It seems David Griffin still didn’t reach the Magic Johnson basketball nirvana and decided shooting is good to have in the modern NBA. Redick is a great fit to provide spacing and Meli is 6-9 forward with range, great value for the next two years. They are a must-watch League Pass team.
Miami Heat (signed):
Jimmy Butler, 4 year – $142 million
Well, maybe?? We don’t know because Miami and Philadelphia need a third team to participate in a trade, and this situation demonstrated why three-team trades are very difficult. The original deal included Miami sending Dragić to Dallas, but Dallas pulled the plug saying that they don’t want him. Someone miscommunicated (or changed their mind), and the teams are working to make the deal happen. It’s doubtful this will stop the trade from happening, but one of the teams may need to sacrifice more than planned.
Indiana Pacers signed:
Malcolm Brogdon, 4 year – $85 million
Jeremy Lamb, 3 year – $31.5 million
This was one of the biggest mysteries on the entire board – what will the Buck do with Brogdon. After paying Middleton and Lopez, Brogdon would mean going too much into the tax, so they agreed on a sign-and-trade with the Pacers. Indiana sent a first-round, and two-second round picks for Brogdon who is coming on a large contract. Given the fact they let Bogdanović go to Utah for $73 million, they must’ve preferred the younger Brogdon. Lamb is also a good find for a team that is playing the depth game.