NBA Free Agents 2013: Sharpshooting Guards Who Can Help Contenders

Maxwell OgdenCorrespondent IIIJuly 3, 2013

MIAMI, FL - MARCH 22: Jose Calderon #8 of the Detroit Pistons looks on during a game against the Miami Heat at American Airlines Arena on March 22, 2013 in Miami, Florida. 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 Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

Transition athletes, interior powerhouses and facilitating point guards are often the rage during NBA free agency. While those players certainly deserve their hype, there's a certain breed of player that can help elevate a pretender to a contender.

The ever-important sharpshooter.

In 2013, there is no shortage of three-point marksmen that are available to join strong teams and provide the perimeter punch that every team needs. With players such as Kevin Martin and J.J. Redick already off of the market, that sense of urgency for marksmen is evident.

The question is, who are the remaining shooters that can push their future team over the edge?


Jose Calderon, UFA

Position: Point Guard

Age: 31

Experience: 8 Seasons

2012-13 Season Averages

18.80 PER, 11.3 PPG, 7.1 APG, 2.4 RPG, 46.1% 3PT


Hidden in the obscurity of the Toronto Raptors organization for seven seasons, Jose Calderon generated attention after being traded to the Detroit Pistons. As a player that was moved at the trade deadline, the attention he received instantly increased.

Calderon shined.

For the season, Calderon finished with averages of 11.3 points and 7.1 assists on a league-best 46.1 percent shooting from beyond the arc. On top of leading the NBA in three-point field goal percentage, Calderon ranked in the top 40 in three-point field goals made.

Plain and simple, this man can flat out shoot.

While his defensive woes are well-documented, Calderon is amongst the NBA's elite offensive point guards. Not only was this the fifth time in six seasons that Calderon topped 7.0 assists, but there's another important factor to acknowledge.

Not only is Calderon one of the NBA's elite three-point shooters, but he was second in the NBA in assist-to-turnover ratio at 4.11—only Chris Paul was better.


Wayne Ellington, UFA

Position: Shooting Guard

Age: 25

Experience: 4 Seasons

2012-13 Season Averages

12.29 PER, 21.3 MPG, 7.9 PPG, 2.1 RPG, 1.3 APG, 39.2% 3PT


After three years of inconsistent production, Wayne Ellington displayed a veteran's prowess in his fourth season. What was most impressive was how mature Ellington was in handling a midseason trade.

Ellington shot 42.3 percent from beyond the arc in 40 games with the Memphis Grizzlies and 37.1 percent in 38 appearances with the Cleveland Cavaliers.

As strong as he was in Memphis, the true testament to his developing abilities were his averages of 10.4 points in 25.9 minutes of action with the Cavaliers. Between his smooth shooting stroke and the ability to pull up in transition, Ellington could be a valuable player for a contending team.

The Los Angeles Lakers have taken note.

As the chips fall and the shooting guards come off of the market, expect Ellington to continually develop into a hot name.


O.J. Mayo, UFA

Position: Shooting Guard

Age: 25

Experience: 5 Seasons

2012-13 Season Averages

14.00 PER, 15.3 PPG, 4.4 APG, 3.5 RPG, 1.1 SPG, 40.7% 3PT


In his first year with the Dallas Mavericks, O.J. Mayo displayed how dangerous he can be as an all-around player. With season averages of 15.3 points, 4.4 assists, 3.5 rebounds and 1.1 steal on a slash line of .449/.407/.820, it makes you question how his PER sat at 14.00.

Regardless of what the advanced statistics tell you, whichever team ends up signing Mayo will reap the benefits.

Mayo is a lethal jump shooter with deep three-point range and the ability to make plays in transition. After displaying lackluster and generally wild play with the Memphis Grizzlies in 2011-12 and 2012-13, Mayo did the most important thing one could ask of him.

He settled down.

Turnovers were an issue, but Mayo played all 82 games, kept Dallas alive with Dirk Nowitzki injured and managed to score from all over the floor. After a putrid February, Mayo even bounced back to shoot the lights out during the closing months of the season.

On a postseason contender, Mayo could be the offensive force at shooting guard that propels them into legitimacy.


Mo Williams, UFA

Position: Point Guard

Age: 30

Experience: 10 Seasons

2012-13 Season Averages

14.47 PER, 12.9 PPG, 6.2 APG, 2.4 RPG, 1.0 SPG, 38.3% 3PT


Mo Williams is a veteran point guard with a career mark of 38.6 percent shooting from beyond the arc. While injuries have been an issue for Williams in recent seasons, he's a high-quality playmaker that can run the pick-and-roll and shoot at an elite clip.

According to Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports, Williams will not sign on to be a backup in Utah.

To be clear, that doesn't mean that Williams will refuse to be the sixth man on a contender. With Utah entering their transition stage, thus placing the franchise into Trey Burke's hands, they'll be far from a title contender.

On the right team, however, Williams can be a valuable contributor with 41 games of postseason experience.

The edge that Williams has over the top available sharpshooters is his ability to facilitate at a high clip. He's averaged at least 5.0 assists in six of his 10 years in the NBA and scored in double-figures in each of his past nine.

Williams may not be the most high-profile name, but he's amongst the most dangerous offensive weapons on the market.