NBA free agency is FAN-tastic

30 06 2010

Monday, I wrote about how awful the NBA Draft was to see in person. Today, I will write about NBA free agency, which is on its way to being the opposite of awful; it’s going to be a thrilling ride. I refuse to predict where players will sign. If plugged-in NBA folks like Chad Ford, Adrian Wojnarowski, Brian Windhorst, Stephen A. Smith and Marc Stein all have differentiating stories, then that should tell you how much false crap is being spewed from all these unnamed sources we see cropping up in each free agent story.

What I will talk about are where I would like to see the free agents go. As a Lakers fan, I shouldn’t have a care in the world. As you may have heard, the Lakers are defending back-to-back champions. But obviously free agency will affect every team in the League. If the Mavericks re-sign Dirk Nowitzki and do a sign-and-trade for LeBron James, or hometown boy Chris Bosh, or even Joe Johnson, then they’ll threaten the Lakers for Western Conference supremacy.

If the Bulls add LeBron and Bosh, as they are able to do financially without a sign-and-trade, then that pair along with Joakim Noah and Derrick Rose will form an intimidating title contender. If the Heat re-sign Dwyane Wade and convince LeBron and Bosh to tail it to South Beach, then they’ll have possibly the best triumvirate of teammates in NBA history. Here is what I hope happens:

Bulls get LeBron James, Chris Bosh. Chicago is a great sports city and the Bulls have six championship banners hanging in United Center. They’re a great enough organization that they deserve another layer added to their team’s history. If a new NBA fan were to turn the pages through a history book of the Bulls, they’d probably remember the MJ Era and a whole lot of trash before and after it. The Bulls and their fans deserve better than that. LeBron and Bosh would team with Rose to form a hell of a squad, an instant title contender. I’m a firm believer that every professional sports league is better when its teams in this country’s top three media markets — New York, Los Angeles and Chicago — are playing at an elite level. Plus, wouldn’t it be fun if the game’s two greatest players (LeBron and Kobe) were each firmly in MJ’s shadow simultaneously?

Heat get Dwyane Wade, Carlos Boozer, Ray Allen. I don’t see any reason why Wade wouldn’t want to stay in Miami if he’s assured of another top free agent joining him. Think of all the positives playing in Miami — no state income tax (that saves a max contract player roughly $500K per year according to recent free agent stories), truck loads of really hot women in mini skirts, decent weather and an outstanding nightlife. Miami might be the perfect NBA groupie city.

The reason I don’t want to see LeBron and Bosh sign in Miami with Wade is that Miami is a really crappy sports town. Heat fans participated in “whiteouts” during Miami’s 2006 title run not to distract opponents. They just thought it was a really fashionable thing to do. The Marlins are averaging 16,500 for every game, second worst in MLB, even though they won World Series in 1997 and 2003, have one of the best players in the league in Hanley Ramirez and consistently field competitive squads despite perennially being financially hamstrung by team owner Jeffrey Loria. Miami doesn’t deserve Bron/Wade/Bosh.

Boozer definitely should not be allowed to play with LeBron again after spurning him and lying to then-Cavs owner Gordon Gund, who was blind, about re-signing with Cavs in 2004. Instead, he bolted to the Utah Jazz on the reasoning that he’d be closer to his home state of Alaska, which is still like 2,000 miles from Utah.

As for Ray Ray, he just needs a slashing scorer like Wade so that he can hit spot-up threes. And Miami will have more money to spend than Chicago on a third free agent.

Knicks get Amare Stoudemire and Joe Johnson. I wouldn’t mind if Amare re-signed with the Suns just for the fact that Steve Nash deserves better than for his team to be ripped apart. I feel bad for him that he’s stuck with one of the worst owners in sports, that buzzkill named Robert Sarver.

I also feel bad for Knicks fans. They’ve been punched in the face for a decade. They need some relief. While Amare and JJ aren’t going to bring them a title, it’d be exciting to watch them reprise their Phoenix Suns ‘7 seconds or less’ days with Mike D’Antoni. With Danilo Gallinari and potentially Luke Ridnour (!), they’d be a very fun offensive team to watch. Absolutely no defense, but a worthwhile watch during the regular season.

Mavericks get Dirk Nowitzki, David Lee. Although I wouldn’t mind seeing The German sign with the Nets to play for The Russian — and his former Mavs coach, Avery Johnson — Dirk is a Maverick through and through. Plus, Mark Cuban might turn suicidal if his buddy Dirk left. Which is why I would like to see the Mavs pull the free agent who nobody is talking about.

Some people have linked Lee to the OKC Thunder, who have the cap room to give him a fat (phat?) contract. Being the Lakers fan that I am, I can guarantee I’d give myself a concussion if that happened. That team is scary enough as is. They’re active enough as is. They’re young and talented enough as is. If they were to add Lee, that and an inevitable boost of maturity would make them serious West players. I don’t know if Lee could fit in with Dallas but they could use another rebounder who can score cheap points.

Nets get Rudy Gay. Maybe this would be a bummer for Nets fans hoping for a game-changer but I don’t really care. They have a good tandem in Devin Harris and Brook Lopez. If Derrick Favors works out and they nab Gay, they’d have a legit team. You just know that if it came down to the Nets whiffing on every major unrestricted free agent, The Russian would tantalize Gay, a restricted free agent, with a contract offer the Memphis Grizzlies would be too intimidated to match.

That’s all. I know Shaq and Paul Pierce are unrestricted’s (Pierce will reportedly opt out of his contract) but I don’t care where Shaq goes and I would like to see the Celtics remain competitive with Pierce returning. You know, just so they can meet the Lakers in the Finals again and blow a 13-point second half lead in Game 7. Have a wonderful summer, Celtics fans!

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One response

1 07 2010
Mets Maize

what’s your beef with robert sarver? and i hope boozer goes to toronto, cuz i hate him. but he will probably land where bosh doesn’t against lebron and wade.

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