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Community Shootaround: Best Available Free Agents

With a week left in July, virtually all of the NBA’s best free agents know where they’ll be playing next season. The excitement of an unpredictable free agency summer began a minute after midnight on July 1st and produced one surprise after another — Kevin Durant to the Warriors, Dwyane Wade to the Bulls, Al Horford to the Celtics, Dwight Howard to the Hawks.

Only a handful of free agents remain on the market, but this is where smart-spending teams can find some bargains. Here are some of the biggest names still available:

  • J.R. Smith was a valuable part of the Cavaliers’ championship team, hitting more than 200 3-pointers during the season. He seems likely to return to Cleveland, but another franchise could steal him away with the right offer.
  • Dion Waiters is known mainly as a shooter, but has improved as a defender during his time in the NBA. At only 24, he may still have a bright future.
  • David Lee was a productive low-post scorer last season in Dallas, averaging 7.8 points and 5.5 rebounds in a reserve role.
  • It seems a long time ago that Lance Stephenson was putting up triple-doubles on a Pacers playoff team, but he’s only 26 and averaged 14.2 points, 4.4 rebounds and 2.8 assists in limited time with the Grizzlies last season.
  • Maurice Harkless is a restricted free agent in Portland, and even though teams may think the Blazers are certain to match any offer, he might be worth a gamble at this stage of free agency. The versatile 23-year-old became a reliable starter in Portland and could become even more valuable if he develops a 3-point shot.
  • Donatas Motiejunas is the only other restricted free agent still on the market. He was developing into an effective low-post player in Houston before back trouble sidelined him in 2015. The back is apparently scaring teams away, as he has yet to receive an offer.
  • Point guard Mario Chalmers was part of several elite teams in Miami and was productive in Memphis before suffering an Achilles injury.

That brings us to tonight’s question: Not counting LeBron James, who is certain to return to Cleveland, who is the best free agent still available? Take to the comments section below to share your thoughts and opinions on the topic. We look forward to what you have to say.

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7 thoughts on “Community Shootaround: Best Available Free Agents

  1. Thronson5

    I think you nailed it. In my opinion JR is definitely the best free agent still available besides Lebron. I wonder when Lebron signs that deal by the way.

  2. json-api

    JR smith is good. Some of the other people on here are not consistent like Dion, lance, or David lee. Mario charmers is a really good point, would already be picked up by a team if it wasn’t for his injury. But JR is without a doubt the best.

  3. J.R. is good in the right situation. In the wrong one he can become a cancer. Buyer beware.

  4. JR Smith to Celtics 3 year $40mil 3rd year team option interesting to see what Lebron makes of it or JR for that matter

  5. hayoooooo

    I don’t know about the best FA’s, but Norris Cole, Matt Bonner, Caron Butler, Ty Lawson, Ray McCallum, Thomas Robinson, Josh Smith, Amar’e Stoudemire, Jason Thompson & Beno Udrih are all minimum contracts that could be good surprises. Well, maybe not Butler as much.

    • Sam Nichols

      Surprises left in Matt Bonner?

      • Connorsoxfan

        I wish the Celtics had grabbed Josh Smith or Amare, but they already have like 18 guys they’re taking to camp with a legit shot at a spot.

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