10 NBA Free Agents That 2011-12 Playoff Contenders Need

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10 NBA Free Agents That 2011-12 Playoff Contenders Need
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NBA free agency might not happen for a while, but when it does, contenders like the Los Angeles Lakers, Boston Celtics, Dallas Mavericks and Miami Heat are going to be looking for help.

Luckily for them, this is a pretty deep free-agent class. Players like Tyson Chandler, Samuel Dalembert and Kris Humphries are there for teams looking to add size and inside presence. Meanwhile, players like Jamal Crawford, J.R. Smith and Jason Richardson are going to be available for teams looking to add a scoring punch.

Needless to say, whenever the lockout ends, there will be a flurry of moves.

The question contenders need to ask is this: Should we go for a big name, or should we fill a need? The answer should be obvious—fill the need. But sometimes contenders get too fancy in free agency.

As an example, the Chicago Bulls signed Carlos Boozer before last season. I think, after watching how this year played out, we can all agree that the $80 million the Bulls used on Boozer would have been better used on a guard and a power forward.

Let's take a look at the 10 players contenders need to sign.


*I'm labeling "contenders" as any team that made it past the first round of the playoffs this past season (Mavericks, Thunder, Lakers, Grizzlies—West. Celtics, Bulls, Heat, Hawks—East.)

**This list is only unrestricted free agents. Also, this isn't a free-agent top 10; it is just a list of the top 10 players that are needed on contenders.

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