NBA Rumors: Projecting the Most Reasonable Destinations for Top Free Agents
The 2013 NBA free-agent class is quickly dwindling and only a handful of top talents are left on the open market.
These young stars and impact veterans that have yet to secure a long-term deal should not fret, as it is only a matter of time before an agreement is negotiated.
For those who can’t stand waiting, here are some predictions on where a few of the big-name free agents will sign.
The restricted free agent point guard may be the most negatively impacted by not finding an early suitor.
According to Charles F. Gardner of the Journal Sentinel, Jennings and his current club, the Milwaukee Bucks, have reached an “impasse” in terms of his future and contract situation.
Considering the Bucks made a highly publicized attempt to poach Atlanta Hawks restricted free agent guard Jeff Teague, it is easy to see why Jennings is upset with the organization that drafted him No. 10 overall back in 2009.
Due to the situation, it would be best for Jennings to sign his one-year, $4.5 million qualifying offer and play his hardest next season.
If he excels—and he will be given a chance to in that depleted backcourt—the young star will get a contract similar to his peers next summer.
Prediction: Milwaukee Bucks
Six years after being selected No. 1 overall in the 2007 draft, Oden is ready to make his triumphant return to the Association.
The once promising big man is now holding meetings with prospective employers in Las Vegas, the site of the league’s summer league.
Oden plans to talk with the Dallas Mavericks, Sacramento Kings and New Orleans Pelicans, but also has the two finalists on his radar—the Miami Heat and San Antonio Spurs, according to Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski.
While the 25-year-old Oden doesn’t have to make a rash decision and should have a long career ahead of him, he will have to make an initial choice between joining a contender and helping a franchise rebuild.
Oden may get paid more to play a bigger role for a team projected to miss the playoffs, but he also has a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to win a ring and play valuable minutes off the bench—conserving his health and minimizing risk—for a real contender.
Prediction: Miami Heat
Dalembert is a longtime journeyman that was hardly used last year as a member of the Bucks loaded frontcourt, but the 32-year-old can still contribute.
As of this juncture, the Mavericks and New York Knicks are the Haitian's two primary suitors, as per Jared Zwerling of ESPN New York, and it is extremely likely that he ends up choosing one of these powerhouse organizations.
Where will Dalembert sign?
The Mavs have the most to gain from nabbing Dalembert, as owner Mark Cuban has whiffed on nearly every one of his free agent goals at the center position.
From Dwight Howard to Andrew Bynum, the club can’t seem to ink a center and simply can’t afford to lose out on someone who may be the starter in 2013-14.
While the Knicks would love to add him to a stout front line that includes Tyson Chandler, they simply don’t have the same level of desperation.
For that reason, the Mavs are likely to offer more and come away as the better option for the veteran center.
Prediction: Dallas Mavericks
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