Ranking the 25 Best NBA Free Agents

Ranking the 25 Best NBA Free Agents

NBA

Ranking the 25 Best NBA Free Agents

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The NBA season has come to a close. We now look forward to the start of free agency, where things are especially interesting this year with several franchise players on the market. The landscape of the league will change drastically by the time the dust settles. Here’s a ranking of the 25 best free agents available, as well as all the information you need to know about NBA free agency.

When does NBA free agency start?

Free agency will officially commence at 6 p.m. ET on June 30. That’s the moment teams can start having official discussions, although there will surely be deals announced minutes after the restriction is lifted from backdoor communications.

Which teams have the most cap space?

The Knicks are slated to have the most cap space in the NBA, closely followed by the Brooklyn Nets, Los Angeles Clippers, Dallas Mavericks, and Los Angeles Lakers.

Top NBA Free Agents

Rank Player Potential Landing Spots Synopsis Type
1 Kawhi Leonard Raptors, Clippers, Knicks After Durant’s Achilles rupture, Leonard will have his pick of suitors. Where he ends up heavily depends on the outcome of the NBA Finals, but if he leaves Toronto, it’s hard to imagine going anywhere other than LA. UFA
2 Kevin Durant Knicks, Clippers, Warriors Even with the Achilles injury, several teams are willing to offer Durant the max. While it seems likely he’ll opt into his $31.5 million player option and rehab with the Warriors, or maybe sign an extension with them, the Knicks and Clippers have been pegged as contenders for the star forward for quite some time. UFA
3 Kyrie Irving Nets, Knicks, Celtics Irving’s plans to team up with his buddy Durant have been put on hold for a while, but it still seems unlikely he ends up in Boston. If that’s indeed the case, Irving will end up in New York; whether it’s via Brooklyn or Manhattan remains to be seen. UFA
4 Klay Thompson Warriors, Lakers After tearing his ACL in Game 6, Thompson’s future is all but a sure thing. The Warriors will do what they can to keep him, but how his injury will affect the length of his contract is worth monitoring. It’s hard to imagine him leaving the Dubs in a situation like this, but crazier things have happened. UFA
5 Jimmy Butler 76ers, Lakers If the Sixers don’t re-sign Butler, he’ll be at the top of the second tier of free agents. He still ranks among the top two-way players in the game, and his maniacal competitiveness means Butler will prioritize going to a title contender over the money. UFA
6 Kemba Walker Knicks, Hornets The Hornets have had their chance and failed with Walker, but they can offer him more money than anyone else, so they’ll be in the running until Walker turns down over $200 million. If he does, he may return to where it all began and play for his hometown Knicks. UFA
7 Tobias Harris 76ers, Nets Harris could stay with Philly if they pass on Butler. If not, Harris will be a prized free agent with a rare combination of size and shooting ability. Every team could use the spacing he provides, and the Nets have his old high school coach on their staff. UFA
8 Khris Middleton Bucks, Knicks, Lakers The Bucks may keep Middleton, but they won’t be able to keep everyone, and Middleton is juuuust good enough to justify a max, but not good enough that it’s a sure thing. If he leaves, just about every team will be interested in his combination of defense and shooting. He could be a good backup plan for teams like the Lakers and Knicks. UFA
9 D’Angelo Russell Nets, Wolves, Jazz Russell’s future in Brooklyn depends on which free agents they can reel in. If they land Irving, Russell will be gone, and the Wolves are already rumored to be interested. The Jazz stand out as another team with a need at point guard and a bit of money to spend. RFA
10 Nikola Vucevic Magic, Knicks Vucevic had a career year last year, and the Magic want to keep him, but at a reasonable price. If he leaves, he’s an attractive offensive option who can do a little bit of everything. He won’t make or break anyone’s future, but many teams could use the offense he creates on his own. UFA
11 Malcolm Brogdon Bucks, Jazz,
Suns
Similar to Middleton, the Bucks would rather keep Brogdon, and have an advantage with his restricted free agency. But the point guard is steady, consistent, and shot 50/40/90 last season while playing great defense. That kind of player is invaluable in the NBA, and it wouldn’t be surprising to see a point guard-needy team throw him a big contract. RFA
12 Brook Lopez Bucks, Lakers, Nets Lopez reinvented himself as the ideal stretch five this season, averaging two threes and two blocks per game. While his defensive numbers were more scheme than skill, he can still hold his own on that end of the court, and his spacing as a center is invaluable. Every team could use his skills, so it’s hard to project exactly where he’ll land, but it’s impossible to imagine a better center to play with LeBron. UFA
13 DeMarcus Cousins Lakers, Knicks, Clippers Cousins is in an odd spot. He’s clearly still a talented offensive force when he’s got it going, but the impact of his Achilles tear and torn quad is undeniable. A team may be interested in taking a flier on him, but this isn’t the Cousins of old. Another one-year deal somewhere may be in the cards for Cousins; where that will be is anyone’s guess. UFA
14 Kristaps Porzingis Mavericks, Clippers, Heat It’s hard to see Porzingis not with Dallas next year after their blockbuster trade. If Porzingis can come back healthy, he could find real success with Luka Dončić. It begins and ends with the injury for Porzingis. RFA
15 Julius Randle Pelicans,  Nets, Kings A lot here will depend on what the Pelicans get back for Anthony Davis, and if Randle opts out of his player option. If Randle still fits, they should do everything they can to keep him. He’s still improving as a player and has skills you can’t teach. UFA
16 Marc Gasol Raptors, Lakers, Hornets Gasol can start or come off the bench as well as fit in every system. He’s not going to be the player he was four years ago, but every team would be better with Marc Gasol in some role. UFA
17 Bojan Bogdanovic Pacers, Kings, Bulls Bojan has proven to be a quality wing option with a sweet shooting touch, which is always valuable in today’s game. He’s a steady defender, even if he’s not a flashy one. The guess is he stays in Indiana on a reasonable deal after carving out a role, but many teams could use a wing like him. UFA
18 J.J. Reddick 76ers, Lakers, Knicks Reddick can still shoot you out of a gym. He would be a major loss for the 76ers if he elects to go elsewhere. The Lakers should make this call. UFA
19 Al Horford Celtics, Knicks, Mavericks Horford fits well in Brad Stevens’ offense but is a two-way veteran that several teams could use. Look for Horford to have several options come July 1, should he choose to opt out of his player option. UFA
20 DeAndre Jordan Knicks, Warriors, Kings DeAndre Jordan is far from what he used to be during his days with the Clippers. Yet, he remains valuable as a big body that protects the rim. There will be a market for him. UFA
21 Paul Millsap Nuggets, Jazz, Nets If a team doesn’t overpay, they could get Paul Millsap at a great value. He knows the game and still impacts it on both ends of the floor. Staying in Denver is the best option here, but it remains to be seen if Denver feels the same way and if they plan to pick up his option. UFA
22 Marcus Morris Celtics, Wizards, Magic Marcus Morris had himself a career year shooting, which may price himself out of Boston’s range. He brings instant energy and knows his role. Morris would be a big loss for the Celtics if he gets the money he’s looking for. UFA
23 Kentavious Caldwell-Pope Lakers, Hawks, Warriors By now, everyone knows what they are getting with KCP: A solid role player that doesn’t need the ball in his hands to be effective. Expect a market to emerge. UFA
24 Kent Bazemore Hawks, Rockets, Knicks Bazemore still has value as a versatile wing, but is best suited coming off the bench. The Rockets come to mind as a good fit if they can move some money around. UFA
25 Rodney Hood Bulls, Knicks, Blazers Rodney Hood has been disappointing overall. With that said, he still has the potential to break out and be an effective scorer, as he showed during big moments this past playoffs. Portland would be happy to keep him around on a cheap deal. UFA

 

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