The never ending quest for BIGS

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The never ending quest for BIGS

Post by gyso on Sun Jul 09, 2017 8:54 am

9 still-unsigned NBA free agents who should be bargains

http://www.msn.com/en-us/sports/nba/9-still-unsigned-nba-free-agents-who-should-be-bargains/ar-BBE0yhi?li=BBgET5V&ocid=spartandhp&pfr=1

Adi Joseph
14 hrs ago

NBA free agency is now a week old, and almost all the big names are off the board. So are some lesser names - even those with stunningly large contracts.

But plenty of talented players are still around. This list doesn't focus on the Kentavious Caldwell-Popes, the Tony Allens or even the Jonathon Simmonses, though. Instead, we're talking about the guys who might come cheap. That means restricted free agents such as Simmons, JaMychal Green and Alan Williams were left off because their teams likely would match their contracts, while unrestricted players expecting somewhat big pay days like Rondo and Derrick Rose also didn't make the cut.

We're talking about potential steals, the guys who might join a team for $5 million or less and end up becoming big-time contributors down the stretch. Here's a look at nine such players:

1. C Tarik Black

Last team: Los Angeles Lakers // Status: unrestricted // Stats: 16.3 mpg, 5.7 ppg, 5.1 rpg

The Lakers' addition of Brook Lopez and desire to get more minutes from Ivica Zubac made Black superfluous, so they waived him before his $6.6 million contract was guaranteed. But Black was a very good defender last year and has been a head-down hustle player for his entire career. Most teams could use a guy like this as their fourth big man.

2. SG Reggie Bullock

Last team: Detroit Pistons // Status: unrestricted // Stats: 15.1 mpg, 4.5 ppg, 2.1 rpg, 0.9 apg, 38.4% 3PT

Injuries have prevented Bullock from really showing what he can do over his four-year NBA career. But the 26-year-old was pretty darn good when he got the chance for the Pistons the past two years. The sample-size was limited, but he rated out as an above-average defender and shooter. None of the injuries have been crippling, and he could be a rotation wing player for a team in need of shooting.

3. G Ian Clark

Last team: Golden State Warriors // Status: restricted // Stats: 14.8 mpg, 6.8 ppg, 1.6 rpg, 1.2 apg, 37.4% 3PT

Stephen Curry is way, way off the market, but his backup is sitting there, waiting. The Warriors have added Omri Casspi, Nick Young and Jordan Bell, and it seems difficult to imagine they could afford to match a reasonable offer on Clark. He'd be a great fit off the bench as a sharpshooting point guard for a team with a forward who likes to run the offense.

4. C Dewayne Dedmon

Last team: San Antonio Spurs // Status: unrestricted // Stats: 17.5 mpg, 5.1 ppg, 6.5 rpg, 0.8 bpg, 3.9 DRPM

Dedmon grades out as one of the best defensive big men in the NBA by many measures, yet he doesn't seem to be viewed as such when it comes time for free agency. The Spurs would love to bring him back, but pricing them out of that might not be difficult, especially if their higher-priority free agent, Simmons, gets a big offer sheet.

5. PG Tyler Ennis

Last team: Los Angeles Lakers // Status: unrestricted // Stats: 11.1 mpg, 4.3 ppg, 1.6 apg, 38.6% 3PT

Ennis has been through four teams in three NBA season. But he's 22 and a recent top-20 draft pick, and point guards notoriously develop slowly. Plus he already can hit 3-pointers and take care of the ball, as he showed during a solid-enough run to close the season for the Lakers. Give him some stability and let him grow into being a good backup point.

6. F Jonas Jerebko

Last team: Boston Celtics // Status: unrestricted // Stats: 15.8 mpg, 3.8 ppg, 3.5 rpg

Jerebko enters free agency after the worst season of his career, which undoubtedly will drop his value significantly. But he also enters it at a time when most of the league is looking for players like him - forwards who can slide between the three and four, defend decently enough and hit 3-pointers. He's made 38.3% of his 3s over the past four seasons and, at 30, would be a solid veteran who still is able to contribute. Side note: Jerebko suffered one of the worst injuries in basketball, an Achilles tendon tear, as a 23-year-old, which never let him show off the level of talent he had on healthy feet.

7. C Alex Len

Last team: Phoenix Suns // Status: restricted // Stats: 20.3 mpg, 8.0 ppg, 6.6 rpg, 1.3 bpg

The Suns appear to covet Williams over Len, whom they drafted No. 5 overall in 2013. That makes sense, both for them and overall, as Williams is a better fit for the small-ball NBA. But Len has shown signs of being a decent defender and made strides on offense last year. He could be the ideal traditional backup center for a team that goes small to start.

8. C Willie Reed

Last team: Miami Heat // Status: unrestricted // Stats: 14.5 mpg, 5.3 ppg, 4.7 rpg, 0.7 bpg, .168 WS/48

There are four centers on this list for a reason: The NBA is overflowing with good big men as supply exceeds demand. But Reed is a bit different because he fits small-ball better than the other three. After years of jumping all over D-League competition, he's proven his value as a backup big at the NBA level and would be a good addition to any frontcourt.

9. SG Thabo Sefolosha

Last team: Atlanta Hawks // Status: unrestricted // Stats: 25.7 mpg, 7.2 ppg, 4.4 rpg, 1.7 apg, 1.5 spg, 3.1 DBPM

In an era where so many NBA players have signed such outlandish contracts, Sefolosha has spent 11 NBA seasons playing great defense, hitting open shots and somehow only making $34 million for his career. Unfortunately for him, interest doesn't seem to be any higher now, and he may again find himself as one of the best value-contracts in the NBA. Here's to hoping someone gives him his due finally, though.


My Note: I have highlighted the Centers in red.  Jonas gets highlighted as well, except with another color.   alien

Is there any of this bunch that do two things:
1. Fit into Brad's game plan?
2. Can be had for the Room MLE? ($4.3M)
3. Can protect the rim in any way?

Oh, that's three things.  Okay, two out of three?


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Re: The never ending quest for BIGS

Post by gyso on Sun Jul 09, 2017 8:55 am

Assessing the Boston Celtics’ low-cost free agency options

https://www.celticsblog.com/2017/7/6/15930736/nba-free-agency-assessing-the-boston-celtics-low-cost-options-dewayne-dedmon-willie-reed

The Celtics have more roster construction to do beyond adding Gordon Hayward but limited means for accomplishing it. We’ve outlined some potential low-cost free-agent targets.

by Greg Cassoli@GregCassoli Jul 6, 2017, 6:51pm EDT

The Boston Celtics remained patient this offseason and landed their man, Gordon Hayward, in free agency. They’ll need to make a few more moves to free up enough cap space to make the deal official, at which point the team’s financial flexibility will be all but gone.

That’s perfectly fine. Hayward is an All-Star wing. He will be by far the most impactful player Boston adds this summer—exactly the type of piece you should sacrifice cap space to land.

The Celtics’ roster remains incomplete though. Boston is in desperate need of bigs. They have enough large, switchable wings to lean into a small-ball heavy identity, but even if that is the path forward, the Celtics will need a little more depth down low. If for no other reason, the coaching staff will need to spell Al Horford and provide some injury insurance.

Finding that player may not be critical to Boston’s success, but it won’t be meaningless, and it probably won’t be easy either. The Celtics are very likely to be capped out after Hayward hits their books, leaving them with only the room exception (valued at $4.3 million) and minimum contracts to lure potential free agents.

All of this may change based on trades, but for now, we’ll move forward under the assumption that after the Hayward signing and its associated transactions, the Celtics will still need bigs, and need them on the cheap. We’ve compiled a list of potential candidates below.

The exact profile of the player Boston needs—a big that can rebound, defend the rim, switch pick-and-roll actions credibly, and shoot enough to maintain the Celtics’ spacing on offense—doesn’t exist here. That player is extremely valuable, and has a price tag that far exceeds anything Boston can offer.

Everyone listed below, however, has at least one of the skills Boston needs. We’ve placed them into two tiers: those that can likely be had for the minimum, and those that will probably require the use of the room exception. Everyone is (subjectively) ranked by how ideally each would fit, from best to worst. A few interesting, varied statistics are included for each player, per Basketball Reference.

Tier 1- Room Exception Candidates

This grouping may have been spoiled a bit by the deal the Chicago Bulls gave to Cristiano Felicio. Any agent worth his or her salt would be wise to use the four-year, $32 million deal as a market setter for most of the players included here. Cap space is drying up as free agency marches on, however, and the Celtics may be able to use that to their advantage and land one of these players at a lower rate.

Dewayne Dedmon (UFA): 13.4 RB/36, 1.7 BLK/36 30.6 DRB%

Getting Dedmon with the room exception might be a bit of a stretch. He’s coming off a good year with the Spurs, and it would be surprising if they didn’t have a desire to bring him back. He hasn’t landed a big contract in his career either, so taking a discount to play in Boston is unlikely.

If the market is cool enough on Dedmon for the Celtics to land him, however, he would make for a great fit. He’d instantly become the team’s best rebounder, a gaping hole in need of filling. Dedmon would likely rate out as Boston’s top interior defender as well. San Antonio’s defense was elite with him on the floor and surrendered 5.3 fewer points per 100 possessions when he played.

Dedmon benefitted from playing in the Spurs system, but he has the skills to transfer his impact on defense outside of San Antonio’s robust infrastructure. He even has a little switchability to his game.

Offensively Dedmon is limited. He’s not much of a shooter, but he possesses enough explosiveness to function as a credible roll man, diving to the rim after setting screens. The Celtics wouldn’t need him to be more than that.

Willie Reed: 11.6 RB/36, 1.6 BLK/36, 22 DRB%

Reed is essentially a slightly worse version of Dedmon. He’s not as effective as a rebounder, and doesn’t have quite as much length. Those things are negatives, but they might leave him available at a lower price point, which could benefit Boston. They’d get all the pluses of adding Dedmon but at a slightly diminished rate. That would be plenty for the role they need to fill.

Allan Williams: 14.8 RB/36, 1.6 BLK/36, 31.2 DRB%

Williams is a huge human being and a monster on the glass, but he’s a restricted free agent, which makes pursuing him relatively unpalatable. Williams started games for the Suns down the stretch last year and played well. Phoenix has a glut of bigs on its roster, so they may let him walk if other parties show interest. It seems unlikely, however, that the Suns wouldn’t be willing to match at the level at which Boston could make an offer. It’s probably not worth tying up cap space to test it out.

Kris Humphries: 10.8 RB/36, 23.0 DRB%, .352 3P%

I’m a little shocked I’m including this name, but Humphries can still grab defensive rebounds, and he has, however improbably, turned himself into an average three-point shooter. That’s not a readily available combination, though in Humphries’s case, it comes with enough defensive limitations to make him a last resort. In fact, upon thinking about it, he probably belongs in the next group.

Honorable Mention:

Shouts to a few other potentially interesting, albeit flawed, candidates in Dante Cunningham (too much of a wing), Mike Muscala (not enough rebounding), JaVale McGee (to spacey to maintain Brad Stevens’s sanity), and Jared Sullinger (too many injuries and memories of missed threes). All of these bigs deserve a look if the other players listed here are not available.

Tier 2- Minimum Contracts

Convincing a player to take a minimum contract is tricky business, and it’s possible that the names you see here are looking for something more substantial. Feel free to consider them a part of the lower end of Tier 1 should the market dictate that is where they belong.

Marreese Speights: 24.1 DRB%, 1.1 BLK/36, .372 3P%

Speights is a decent defensive rebounder and a good three-point shooter. He was willing to sign for the minimum with the Clippers, which is a bit surprising, but if he wanted to do the same for the Celtics, it would be well worth a shot.

Thomas Robinson: 14.3 RB/36, 15.8 ORB%, 28.1 DRB%

Robinson is good at two things: rebounding and running the floor. The Celtics wouldn’t be acquiring him to do anything else. He’d essentially be Tyler Zeller without the midrange shots and with an ability to grab rebounds. Robinson might be a bit too one-dimensional for Stevens, but he’s a candidate to fill a role nonetheless.

Jeff Withey: 17.9 DRB%, 2.6 BLK/36

Withey is intriguing as a shot blocker, but his presence in the paint hasn’t actually ever translated to consistent minutes, which is a bit concerning. I’m not a huge believer here, but Withey deserves a mention given his likely availability at a low price.

Andrew Bogut/Festus Ezeli/Tiago Splitter/Donatas Montiejunas/Terrence Jones:

These are all different players with different means of contributing, but they share a commonality: each has, in fairly recent memory, looked like a player deserving of far more than a minimum contract, but due to significant injury, each may be available on the cheap. Boston might be better served rolling the dice and hoping one of these guys outplays a minimum contract (if they are willing to sign for that price) rather than appropriately paying a lower-end talent.

My comments:  Some repeaters on this list, plus it is broken down by where they fall into the cap exception.

Old friend Kris Humphries?  Too much 4 and not enough 5?

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Re: The never ending quest for BIGS

Post by kdp59 on Sun Jul 09, 2017 9:27 am

re-posting in correct thread:

Thanks for those posts gyso.

I was just looking at the list of big men available to see if any might fit in our $4M exception.

Dedmon would probably be the touchdown signing, but I think he'll get more money at SA.

Reed is a step down form Dedmon to me and he has multiple teams looking at him so he may end up being out of our price range

Len never played up to his draft stock and I don't know if he would fit with what Brad does.

Black is the same to me as far as fit.

Speights can do some of the things Brad likes and is a better outside shot than most on those lists. He may want more than $4M after playing for Doc at minimun wage last year though.

the rest on those lists are no better than Zeller to me, so why he is not considered an option. IF he would play for that $4M ( will he get any better offer?) he could be a comfortable placeholder until Zizic is ready to be the BU center.

a couple other big men still looking for work:

Aron Baynes-Det. He passed on a player option this year I think, but he may end up having to play for less now.

Ekpe Udoh- he played overseas the past couple years and was the MVP of the euroleague final four this year. He was serviceable big man in the NBA before. He is one of the highest paid US players in Europe ball however that may be a problem for Danny.

Joffrey Lauvergne- Bulls just pulled his tender making him and UFA now. has played for three teams now in a couple years. Minimum wage maybe?

and if we are going to be talking Kris Humphries...why not our old Buddy Bass? he played for minimum for Doc last year. I'd rather have him back than Humphries it those are my options.

finally if I had to rank them:

1. Dedmon
2. Speights
3. Zeller
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Re: The never ending quest for BIGS

Post by gyso on Sun Jul 09, 2017 9:45 am

Brandon Bass? Refresh my memory:

He had a good elbow jumper, but he didn't stretch it out to the three? Is that correct?
He was a good option for the bruisers, he was able to hold his ground. Is that correct?
Nimble tall guys just shot over him and took rebounds away from him. Is that correct?

Wouldn't we be better off with Zizic and look for a nimble tall guy?

Just wondering.

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Re: The never ending quest for BIGS

Post by cowens/oldschool on Sun Jul 09, 2017 9:49 am

Zeller come on we've seen how soft he is for years!!

I haven't followed Len, but he seems way more a real 5 than Zeller.
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Re: The never ending quest for BIGS

Post by gyso on Sun Jul 09, 2017 9:58 am

cowens/oldschool wrote:Zeller come on we've seen how soft he is for years!!

I haven't followed Len, but he seems way more a real 5 than Zeller.

Len is a restricted free agent. He may be hard for us to sign with what we have available for exceptions.

He probably is better than Zeller.

Whoever we pick should be able to play some defense as well as shoot out to the three a bit.

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Re: The never ending quest for BIGS

Post by red16russ11 on Sun Jul 09, 2017 11:07 am

I like Dedmon, Speights and Bogut, in that order
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Re: The never ending quest for BIGS

Post by kdp59 on Sun Jul 09, 2017 11:13 am

cowens/oldschool wrote:Zeller come on we've seen how soft he is for years!!

I haven't followed Len, but he seems way more a real 5 than Zeller.

you would think so, being a high draft pick and a legit seven footer. But Phoenix seems willing to let the market (if there is one) set his salary right now.

I think his lack of mobility has been an issue in the new NBA as well as his lack of outside shot. Both put together doesn't make him a fit for what Brad does here, to me.

yes , we know what Zeller is and what he can (and Can't) do. but that's my point too, he is plug and play. a good soldier (even if just a private) and will give effort each time he's asked. Won't make waves if Zizic ends up moving ahead of him on the depth chart.

we are not getting an all-NBA defender or rebounder with the money we have left anyway.

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Re: The never ending quest for BIGS

Post by gyso on Sun Jul 09, 2017 11:59 am

kdp59 wrote:
cowens/oldschool wrote:Zeller come on we've seen how soft he is for years!!

I haven't followed Len, but he seems way more a real 5 than Zeller.

you would think so,  being a high draft pick and a legit seven footer. But Phoenix seems willing to let the market (if there is one) set his salary right now.

I think his lack of mobility has been an issue in the new NBA as well as his lack of outside shot. Both put together doesn't make him a fit for what Brad does here, to me.

yes , we know what Zeller is and what he can (and Can't) do. but that's my point too, he is plug and play. a good soldier (even if just a private) and will give effort each time he's asked. Won't make waves if Zizic ends up moving ahead of him on the depth chart.

we are not getting an all-NBA defender or rebounder with the money we have left anyway.


That's how I read it as well, not much money left for signing free agents.

Versatility requires having different things for different situations. Zizic and Zeller are different and neither of them will start this year, or if they do, we are up shitz creek with no paddle. Off the bench, one or the other may work, depending on matchups.

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Re: The never ending quest for BIGS

Post by dboss on Sun Jul 09, 2017 6:47 pm

All the quality bigs are already gone.

Ask Horford what he wants for xmas? Aron Baynes averaged 15 MPG if they let him on the court.

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Re: The never ending quest for BIGS

Post by gyso on Wed Jul 12, 2017 8:30 am

kdp59 wrote:re-posting in correct thread:

Thanks for those posts gyso.

I was just looking at the list of big men available to see if any might fit in our $4M exception.

Dedmon would probably be the touchdown signing, but I think he'll get more money at SA.

Reed is a step down form Dedmon to me and he has multiple teams looking at him so he may end up being out of our price range

Len never played up to his draft stock and I don't know if he would fit with what Brad does.

Black is the same to me as far as fit.

Speights can do some of the things Brad likes and is a better outside shot than most on those lists. He may want more than $4M after playing for Doc at minimun wage last year though.

the rest on those lists are no better than Zeller to me, so why he is not considered an option. IF he would play for that $4M ( will he get any better offer?) he could be a comfortable placeholder until Zizic is ready to be the BU center.

a couple other big men still looking for work:


Aron Baynes-Det. He passed on a player option this year I think, but he may end up having to play for less now.


Ekpe Udoh- he played overseas the past couple years and was the MVP of the euroleague final four this year. He was serviceable big man in the NBA before. He is one of the highest paid US players in Europe ball however that may be a problem for Danny.

Joffrey Lauvergne- Bulls just pulled his tender making him and UFA now. has played for three teams now in a couple years. Minimum wage maybe?

and if we are going to be talking Kris Humphries...why not our old Buddy Bass? he played for minimum for Doc last year. I'd rather have him back than Humphries it those are my options.

finally if I had to rank them:

1. Dedmon
2. Speights
3. Zeller

kdp,

You least you added him to the list. No one else did. cheers

You also guessed that he would take less. I wonder if this move was in the works longer. His agent wanted him to go to where he would play more and get more exposure. Done and done!!

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