The 2018-2019 free agency class is filled with players that can help take a franchise to the next level. Not only will there be a stockpile of talent, but there will be just over ten teams that will have approximately $20 million dollars to spend as it stands right now. Lets look at the top 14 players that will be available next year.
14. Myles Turner
Turner regressed slightly in his third season with the Pacers and was hurt by some injuries causing him to miss double digit games for the second time in his career. The one bright spot that helped land Myles on this list is his ability and improvement from beyond the arc, going from 21 percent to 35 percent in just three years. The fact that Turner is not only one of the bigger forces down low when it comes to rim protection, he can also spread the floor removing opposing teams’ centers from the paint. This makes him a hot commodity and the fourteenth best player next summer.
13. Ricky Rubio
Utah Jazz head coach Quin Snyder had Ricky Rubio take on a role that was a little different than the role he had been accustomed to in Minnesota. By no means did Rubio stop play-making, but he coupled that with a much more aggressive mentality when it came to scoring. Rubio averaged 10.3 points and 8.4 assists per game through his first six season with the Timberwolves. In 77 games with the Jazz, he averaged 13.1 points and 5.3 assists while shooting the best percentage he’s ever shot in a season.
12. DeAndre Jordan
DeAndre Jordan signed in Dallas this time around but didn’t commit to anything long term with the Mavericks. They agreed on a one year, $24.1 Million dollar contract which will allow him to test the free agent waters once again come July next year. Look for DJ to get an even more lucrative offer than the one he got this summer.
11. Kris Middleton
Kris Middleton reminds me of the next Joe Johnson. Although his total dollar earnings from his NBA career won’t show, Johnson was one of the more underrated or at least under appreciated players this league has had. With that being said, just take a look at what Middleton has been quietly doing in Milwaukee.
Middleton has become one of the better scorers and two way players in the game. Last season he was one of 23 NBA players to average over 20.0 points a game sitting at number 22 above Klay Thompson.
10. Paul Milsap
With a heightened sense of excitement for Denver basketball to begin last season, a damper held the Nuggets down when Milsap went out with a wrist injury that required surgical repair. Paul was able to scrape together a total of 38 regular season games but would fail to help his team make it to the post season. I think he is deemed for great comeback season where he looks like the all-star he once was increasing his overall value come next year.
9. Marc Gasol
Gasol is still a top center in this league despite a forgetful season with the Grizzlies last year. Although the league is evolving towards a more mobile center, he still fits the ask with his three point shooting and play making ability.
8. Kristaps Porzingis
With rumors spreading the Porzingis may not be ready to go until Christmas, I still don’t want to take way from what he has done in the NBA in his young career. He was just starting to come into his own prior to the injury and was averaging 22.7 points, 2.4 blocks, while shooting almost 40% from the three point line. He is one of the catalysts of the NBA gearing more towards mobile centers that can shoot, block and do it all. Don’t be distracted by his knee injury and give him the respect he deserves at number 8 on this list.
7. Kemba Walker
The two time all star has now put together his third season in a row averaging over 20 points per game. There hasn’t been a lot of team success in his tenure in Charlotte and his talent has felt to be somewhat wasted there. Coming up on his eighth season with Charlotte I just have a strong feeling we will be watching Kemba Walker play his last season with the Hornets.
6. DeMarcus Cousins
We will have to wait and see if we have the same DeMarcus Cousin we saw right before he went down with the achilles injury. He was playing some of the best ball of his career along side Anthony Davis and now has a chance to shine even more by playing with one of the greatest teams to ever be assembled. If Cousins is able to return to form and goes on to win a championship with the Warriors, his stock will rise dramatically and will be back in line for a max contract in no time.
5. Jimmy Butler
This one is a little more drama filled. There have been reports saying that Butler is unhappy with young star Karl-Anthony Towns and since then has turned down a contract extension offered by the Wolves worth $110 million. Boston has been the most popular name thrown around for likely destinations.
4. Klay Thompson
I wouldn’t get too excited about this one. Even though he is one of the best players in next years free agency class, this one is probably the most predictable when it comes to where he signs, or resigns. He has been on record multiple times saying how he wants to play his entire career for the Warriors and despite turning down a offer for an extension I believe it won’t be hard for the two sides to agree on terms that will keep Thompson in a Golden State jersey for years to come.
3. Kyrie Irving
Kyrie and I don’t have to do much talking to prove why he’s near the top of this list. Being one of the few players to beat Golden State for a title, that automatically puts him in line for most desired. Teams are going to be throwing all they can at him to try to get him but ultimately Boston can offer the most financially and talent wise.
2. Kawhi Leonard
You thought the Kawhi Leonard drama was over since he was traded to Toronto? You thought wrong… We will do it all over again this time next year. Buckle up.
1. Kevin Durant
Kevin Durant is on his own level for this free agency class. If a team is able to somehow pry Durant away from what seems to be an automatic bid to the finals over the next couple of years it will be one of the biggest signings in free agent history.
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