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NBA Free Agents 2012: Teams Primed to Overpay for Remaining Free Agents

Tyler Conway@jtylerconwayFeatured ColumnistJuly 17, 2012

NEWARK, NJ - APRIL 10:  Kris Humphries #43 of the New Jersey Nets reacts after he made a basket in the first half against the Philadelphia 76ers at Prudential Center on April 10, 2012 in Newark, New Jersey.  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 Chris Chambers/Getty Images)
Chris Chambers/Getty Images

With nearly every top-tier free agent locked away, it would stand to reason that stock exchange that is the NBA free-agency period would start slowing down.

However, everyone who follows this annual spectacle knows a little thing like lacking talent isn't going to stop general managers from overpaying underperforming players. Sometimes they do it out of necessity, other times out of incompetence.

But it never stops being funny when you look at a player's new contract and your first reaction is, "When is it expiring?"

And these are the teams most likely to still give out one of these ghastly contracts this offseason.  

1. Golden State Warriors

For most of the early free-agency period, it seemed as if the Warriors were bidding against themselves for Carl Landry.

But the 28-year-old power forward has become a hot commodity over the past few days as the Charlotte Bobcats and Minnesota Timberwolves jumped into the fray.

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What that means for Landry is a bidding war and a payday larger than anyone expected coming into free agency.

Considering Landry's laundry list of knee issues dating back to his days at Purdue, any multi-year deal at the mid-level is a mistake. And with the Warriors showing the most strident interest in his services, they are likely the culprit to write that fat check.  

2. Denver Nuggets

To quote Winston Churchill, Nuggets restricted free agent JaVale McGee is a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside of an enigma. There is no player in the NBA who can pull of something so awe inspiring on one trip down, only to follow it up with something bafflingly dumb on the next.  

There's also no denying that McGee has enough talent to make the Nuggets' five-year, $50 million offer look genius. He's a 24-year-old seven-footer with awe inspiring athleticism and Defensive Player of the Year potential.

But McGee's mental pitfalls make investing five years, the maximum length of an NBA contract, incredibly risky. While he could live up to his immense potential, there's a reason why the Washington Wizards gave up on McGee and took Nene's bad contract back to do so.  

Treading lightly with a three-year deal could save the Nuggets a ton of mental anguish.  

3. Brooklyn Nets

Nets general manager Billy King has been handing out financial mea culpas to incumbent free agents this offseason like tax returns, and power forward Kris Humphries will be no different.  

Humphries can look forward to the Brook Lopez treatment from King, where the center was awarded a four-year, $61 million deal out of both on-court need and an apology for trying to ship him off for Dwight Howard.

The Nets are now in a position with Humphries where they need his presence as badly as he wants a long-term contract. And say what you will about the Humph's off-court celebrity persona, but he's finished top-five in the NBA in rebounding the past two seasons and provides cohesion for a roster in flux.  

Brooklyn isn't without competition for Humphries services. The Bobcats are reportedly offering a three-year, $22 million contract and their efforts may ramp up after losing out on hometown boy Antawn Jamison.  

With the bidding likely stopping at no less than $8 million per season, the Nets will scramble to overpay yet another above average talent.  

Update:

ESPN.com's Marc Stein is reporting that the Nets and Humphries have agreed on a two-year, $24 million contract.  So, yep.  Overpaid.  

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