NBA Free Agents 2012: Bargain Players Who Fill Huge Needs on New Teams
While the big-name free agents have all found places to play this season—including Steve Nash, Jeremy Lin and Ray Allen—there are still several players that can make an impact on the right team. Seasoned veterans that come at a bargain price can be one of the most valuable signings a team can make.
The 29-year-old guard is a great player to have on your bench. He still possesses good speed and can shoot from the outside. He split time between the Pacers and Raptors last season and averaged 12.2 points per game.
The Lakers are one of the teams that could really use a guard off the bench like Barbosa. They are interested in the 29-year-old as long as he is willing to sign for the veteran's minimum. He would be a great sixth-man option and a reliable shooter off the bench that Los Angeles just doesn't have.
Chris "Birdman" Andersen
Chris Andersen is is a long-time veteran of the game but can still provide a solid post presence at age 34. He does come with some character issues though—first with the NBA's anti-drug policy, then when he was involved in a child exploitation investigation, but he was never charged in the latter.
Andersen has agreed to sign for the veteran minimum according to ESPN's Jared Zwerling. Zwerling goes on to say that "Birdman" is interested in playing on the Knicks with former teammates Carmelo Anthony and J.R. Smith. At the vet's minimum, New York should jump all over this deal. Andersen still has the ability to make an impact on a team both defensively and with his added energy.
The 34-year-old Kenyon Martin played solid basketball for the Clippers last year and was hoping to sign a nice contract as a reserve in 2012. However, at this stage it seems like most free agents are willing to sign minimum contracts which means Martin has to decide between more money or job certainty.
Sam Amick of SI.com says that the Golden State Warriors were interested in Martin until they signed Carl Landry last week. He goes on to say the Lakers and Nets are two potential fits for the forward. Los Angeles' money is likely better spent on Barbosa, but the Nets could add depth to an already talented team for their first year in Brooklyn.
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