NBA Free Agents 2012: Risky Free Agents Teams Must Avoid
Even though the NBA technically has a moratorium on new business until July 11, it already feels like we know where most of the major chess pieces are headed.
But even though nearly every big name is off the board, teams like the Dallas Mavericks and Houston Rockets are sitting with cap money burning in their pocket after missing out on their major targets.
For Dallas, the team put all of its eggs in the hometown boy Williams' basket, were spurned for New York by Jason Kidd and are now having to settle for the Ramon Sessions' of the world.
Same deal for Houston, whose general manager, Daryl Morey, was seemingly convinced that if he accumulated every mediocre asset possible that it would be enough to land Dwight Howard. Now he's off signing Jeremy Lin and Omer Asik to massive poison pill offer sheets.
But as we start approaching the bottom of the NBA free-agency barrel, there are some guys teams with cap room need to avoid at all cost.
Here's a few:
1. Nate Robinson
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The 5'9" Robinson is a small spark plug with springs in his shoes that is awesome to root for...unless he's on your team. As anyone who has closely watched Robinson play, he's far more likely to shoot you out of a game than he is to captivate an audience with his SportsCenter-ready flashes of brilliance.
His sulkish off-court attitude is another reason the former Washington Husky is looking for his fourth team in as many years. His 11.2 points per game may be tempting, but it's probably best to avoid KryptoNate altogether if you're a team looking to contend.
2. Kris Humpries
The former Mr. Kardashian is far more skilled of a player than anyone gives him credit for. He's arguably one of the five best natural rebounders in the NBA today and has an improving post presence that could help just about any team.
But there's a reason why he struggled to find work last offseason and has seemingly become a taboo take back in sign-and-trade talks.
What happened is that his relationship with celebrity has become far more of a distraction than a player of his caliber is worth. When you Google Humphries' name, his TMZ, Perez Hilton and Radar online profiles all come up before his ESPN.com page.
To me, that's too much of a red flag to ignore.
3. J.R. Smith
If you're noticing the trend by now, it's pretty safe to say I pretty much hate high-volume shooters and guys with character concerns.
Smith undeniably has both.
His innate ability to score the basketball from anywhere on the floor and fierce competitiveness makes him intriguing, but his below-the-equator basketball IQ, shot jacking and Robinson-like slouching tendencies make him a stay away for me.
4. Ryan Anderson
Finally, a guy with absolutely no character concerns or selfish tendencies. For Anderson, this is a strictly basketball matter.
While Anderson had an undeniably brilliant season in 2011-12, he's a player who could struggle to find the correct fit. Anderson shot just 27 percent from beyond the arc this past regular season when Dwight Howard was out of the lineup and scored just 9.6 points per game in the playoffs.
What the stretch power forward needs is a strong defensive presence in the middle to allow him to play his roaming offensive game.
There just aren't too many Dwight Howards out there to open the necessary space for Anderson to be effective long-term in my eyes.
5. Kwame Brown
Because nothing good in the history of mankind has ever come from putting Kwame Brown on your basketball team.
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