NBA Hot Property: The NBA's Top 5 Free Agents of 2011
There are some big decisions ahead facing numerous NBA players regarding their future plans. Tim Duncan, Zach Randolph and others are all up for grabs this summer.
Where will these big names take their talents this offseason?
This article investigates the best five unrestricted free agents who could cause big headlines at the end of this season.
5. Ray Allen, Boston Celtics
Ray Allen is one of the best, if not the best, shooters in NBA history. Recently surpassing Reggie Miller on the all-time three-pointers made list, Ray Allen has shown that the statistics don't lie.
Ray-Ray will enter unrestricted free agency at the end of this season, and could be up for grabs at the end of this season.
Likely Outcome: Allen stays in Boston.
Ray Allen won't have too many more years to go in his decorated career, but given the Celtics' success and potential going forward, it is likely that Allen will finish his career in Boston.
4. Nene, Denver Nuggets
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Nene is having his best season yet. Averaging 16.0 PPG and 7.3 RPG, the center's numbers don't do him justice. He brings passion to the court every night, something that the Denver faithful can be grateful for.
Nene has also stated that he wants to be a Nugget for the rest of his career, but business is business, and as shown in previous offseasons, anything can happen at the season's end.
That being said, it is still likely that Nene will remain in Denver. I'd suggest that he could be shipping out if the price is right, though.
Likely Outcome: Nene stays in Denver.
As stated, Nene should stay in Denver, but if shipped, the Golden State Warriors would be in the hunt. They are desperately in need of a post presence, and Nene brings that to the table.
Nene could develop chemistry with Stephen Curry and Monta Ellis to make the Warriors a playoff threat, and it would land them their "big name" that they were searching for before the trade deadline.
3. Tim Duncan, San Antonio Spurs
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Tim Duncan is arguably the best power forward to ever play in the NBA. However, he hits unrestricted free agency this offseason. Having accomplished almost everything in San Antonio, Duncan may wish to try something different to end his career.
If shipped, Duncan could provide the experience needed to a younger team that will make noise in future playoffs.
Likely Outcome: Duncan stays with the Spurs.
One of the very best to ever play the game and a lock for the Hall of Fame, it would be fitting for all concerned to see Duncan finish his career with the Spurs.
2. David West, New Orleans Hornets
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An extremely talented player, West will create no shortage of headlines this summer. The only thing going for him in New Orleans is Chris Paul, and he wants out as well.
The Hornets have improved a lot over last season, but they don't pose a huge threat deep in the playoffs. Another season with limited success may cause West to take his talents elsewhere.
Likely Outcome: West leaves New Orleans.
David West has indicated that he wants a change of scenery this offseason, and it is likely to become a reality. West is having an outstanding season, and his success this season could land him a sizable pay check at another team.
Look for West to change teams at the end of this season. If West goes, look for Chris Paul to be the next to ship out of New Orleans.
1. Zach Randolph, Memphis Grizzlies
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One of the most severely underrated players in the NBA today, Zach Randolph's stats have been huge this season. He has carried Memphis to playoff contention.
His success this season will result in an increased value on the open market.
Likely Outcome: Randolph signs with the highest bidder.
Zach Randolph has played with four teams already, so don't be surprised to see him putting on a new uniform next season.
Look for Randolph to sign with the team that offers him the biggest paycheck this summer. He would be an asset to a title contender for future seasons.