Top 10 Free Agents Not In The NBA
Many NBA teams often look for other options outside of available free agents when the summer winds down. Here is a list of players currently not in the NBA who could be signed at the end of this year or a few years down the road.
This list only includes players who aren’t draft-eligible and are likely to be pursued by NBA teams.
1. Josh Childress
He’s the best out of all the NBA players going to Europe. Childress isn’t technically a free agent because the Atlanta Hawks still own his rights, but he is a restricted free agent and would leave Greece if the Hawks choose not to match another team’s offer.
Childress has proven himself as a very solid NBA player off the bench, averaging double-digits in points his entire career with the Hawks. Atlanta will probably be doing everything it can to bring Childress back, as he was a major factor in its run to the playoffs.
2. Nenad Krstic
Any seven-footer that displays some sort of ability to play in the NBA is going to be desired by most teams. Krstic has gone through two seasons filled with injuries so if he can stay healthy, he’ll be the most pursued non-NBA player.
Krstic might not ever come back to the NBA if he succeeds in Europe, but there will be plenty of teams calling him if he decides to come back. Krstic is only 24 years old and has plenty of time to improve.
At some point, the former Nets’ center will gain more confidence down low and average 18 points, seven rebounds. Krstic’s touch around the basket is something almost any team could use because quality seven-footers have become a premium.
3. Ramunas Siskauskas
Siskauskas the best player in Euroleague and showed plenty of flashes in the Olympics to prove what makes him the best. He has the game of a prototypical shooting guard and is currently in his prime.
The Lithuanian probably won’t make an NBA roster because he’s in his prime and could contribute no more than three years of service before he will lose too much of his skills to play in the league.
Siskauskas is a little older than NBA teams would like if they are going to invest in an international player. At this point, the move doesn’t make much sense for Siskauskas either because he is the team leader for CSKA Moscow, a very good team in Europe that has made the Euroleague Final Four for seven of the last eight years.
Many NBA General Managers would sign Siskauskas in a second if he wanted to play this year, but it seems like he is more content playing in Europe.
4. Juan Carlos Navarro
Navarro had a good rookie season for the Grizzlies and has a bright future ahead of him. He showed some great skills in the Olympics when he hit some big shots for Spain against Team USA and has a great finger-roll.
He could become a pretty good point guard if he ever decides to come back to the NBA, but for now he will be one of the best players in Europe. However, he is probably done with the NBA because he signed a five-year contract with F.C. Barcelona, making it very difficult to head back to the league.
5. Jannero Pargo
Pargo is a very serviceable combo-guard who most teams would probably sign as a back-up. He only has a one-year contract with Dynamo Moscow so he could easily be back in the NBA a year later.
If he can have a good season in Russia, Pargo’s salary could go up at least $1 million, which is more than an NBA team would probably pay. Don’t completely rule him out of returning to the league as he still has plenty of good years ahead of him.
6. Carlos Delfino
He has the talent to play in the NBA, but he needs to prove that he can play at the top of his game all the time and not just when he wants.
If Delfino plays every game with as much heart as he did during the Olympics and when the Detroit Pistons first signed him, he would be some team’s starting shooting guard. Instead, he is going to be the best player on a Russian team that doesn’t even play in Euroleague.
Delfino is young enough that he could pack his bags from Russia any day he wants, head back to the NBA, and receive an offer from most teams.
7. Julius Hodge
The former North Carolina State guard already had some experience in the NBA and should seriously get another look with a team looking for a wiry guard.
He had a great season last year with the Albuquerque Thunderbirds for the D-League, averaging 23.7 points, 8.2 rebounds, and six assists. Hodge finally looks like he’s going to live up to his potential as a versatile player, probably best suited as a shooting guard but can play small forward and even some point guard.
The NBA website gives him the highest efficiency rating (27.9) because of his overall ability. If he goes to the NBA, he will probably be yet another D-League success story as a solid contributor off the bench, possibly even working his way into the starting line-up.
8. Dimitis Diamantidis
The top defender in Europe has made it perfectly clear that he has no intention to play in the NBA, but that should not stop teams from calling Diamantidis.
He could easily help a team in need of a good perimeter defender with his size and knack for going after the ball. Diamantidis isn’t going to be the best player on NBA team, which is why he is so reluctant to leaving Europe, but he is a great team player.
At 6-5, he shows great basketball IQ with solid decision making and consistent shooting.
9. Marcus Hasilip
There is a reason why the Milwaukee Bucks selected Hasilip in the lottery and he is finally starting to show that upside with great athleticism and speed. While he is quite limited in his post moves, he has developed a style that turned him into a good European player.
He has great moves towards the post does a good job of using his size. He isn’t going to be on top of any NBA lists, but he should earn a few training camp invites and earn his way on a team’s bench.
10. Aaron Miles
You might remember him for his days in Kansas for his great passing ability. In Europe, he held on to being a pass-first point guard, but also plays some great defense.
He won’t get more than the NBA minimum and might have problems staying on a team, but he would work well with teams looking to slow the tempo late in the game when they already have the lead.
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