NBA Free Agents 2012: OJ Mayo and Talents Boston Celtics Must Pursue

Luis BatlleContributor IJune 30, 2012

LOS ANGELES, CA - MAY 07:  O.J. Mayo #32 of the Memphis Grizzlies shoots over Kenyon Martin #2 of the Los Angeles Clippers in Game Four of the Western Conference Quarterfinals in the 2012 NBA Playoffs on May 7, 2011 at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
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A 2012 Conference Finals loss to the Miami Heat has forced the Boston Celtics to be ready to hit free agency with force this offseason.

Grizzlies guard OJ Mayo is among the attractive free agents the Celtics need to take a hard look at this offseason. There is no doubting the insurance policy he can be for the future of this team at the SG spot.

If the Celtics are to go out and bring in free agents, it is clear they could use the help in the frontcourt, as well as solid veteran experience if it means low-cost contracts and high reward.

Here are Mayo and the other most enticing prospects that the Celtics should consider from the first day of free agency.


OJ Mayo, SG, Memphis Grizzlies (Unrestricted)


There is no denying the scoring talent that Mayo possesses, and that is exactly why the Celtics need to pursue the talent.

According to The Commercial-Appeal's Ronald Tillery, as of Saturday morning, the Grizzlies have decided not to give Mayo a qualifying offer simply because their payroll is set to be extremely high over the next several years. This is a huge turning point in Mayo's career path, as now he becomes an unrestricted free agent.

PHOENIX, AZ - APRIL 25:  Steve Nash #13 of the Phoenix Suns during the NBA game against the San Antonio Spurs at US Airways Center on April 25, 2012 in Phoenix, Arizona.  The Spurs defeated the Suns 110-106.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and
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With Ray Allen's future with the team up in the air, Mayo would seem the perfect fit at the position along with Avery Bradley. Not to mention that Mayo has the length and ball control to potentially play as both a point guard and swingman in the rotation, which is also a huge advantage for the Celtics.

Combine his fit with the team with the fact that he can produce when given the minutes, and there is certainly reason to believe the Cs should pursue this hot-shot free agent.


Steve Nash, PG, Phoenix Suns (Unrestricted)

Rajon Rondo is the present and future at the PG position, but bringing in Steve Nash is still anything but a poor move. According to ESPN's Marc Stein, Boston is one of the teams in the running for the future Hall-of-Famer.

There is no question Nash will take a pay cut to be a part of a championship contender, along with the fact he is pushing 40 years of age. Nash would give Rondo the rest he needs throughout the season and postseason, and this would give Rondo much fresher legs next year. 

And as solid as guard Bradley has proven himself to be, there is no question keeping him at 20-25 minutes a game in order to integrate a knock-down shooter and prolific passer like Nash is the right move for Doc Rivers. Anything more than a 1-2 year contract would be absurd, but a decent one or two year deal could be perfect for this team.

Much like when the team won the title in 2008 behind backup PG Sam Cassell, Nash would provide the necessary leadership to compete for a title against the Miami Heat.


Jason Terry, SG, Dallas Mavericks (Unrestricted)

If they end up losing a deadly, clutch shooter like Ray Allen, why not grab the next best thing?

Jason Terry is as cool, calm, and collective as any All-Star caliber player in the league and is notorious for his ability to knock down the big shot when needed. Strategically, it would make more sense than bringing in Nash, considering where Terry plays on the floor and what the Celtics lose if Allen is to part ways with the team.

It would make sense for the Celtics to at least consider Terry in the coming days when free agency begins to heat up, as there is no question he can bring clutch points and surefire bench points to a team whose second unit struggles mightily.