NBA Free Agents 2020: Contract Predictions for Danilo Gallinari, Top ShootersMay 26, 2020
The value placed on NBA sharpshooters keeps climbing.
Not even the uncertainty surrounding the upcoming offseason can change that.
The game keeps pushing further out to the perimeter—four of the top seven all-time team averages in three-point attempts came this season—and the importance of floor spacing expands right along with it. That's great news for the upcoming snipers-for-hire, as they have the one skill that still gets paid in this market.
Danilo Gallinari, Oklahoma City Thunder
A healthy Danilo Gallinari quietly ranks among the league's most lethal offensive weapons.
In each of the last two seasons, he has averaged at least 19 points and two three-pointers while shooting 40-plus percent from distance. No one else can make that claim, and only seven other players—Stephen Curry, Kyrie Irving and Karl-Anthony Towns among them—have even done that once in this stretch.
"[Gallinari] averages that for a reason," Chris Paul said, per Maddie Lee of The Oklahoman. "Because everybody else had the scouting report, too, and you can't necessarily stop it. So, I think a lot of times the scouting report on Gallo is to not let him get open looks, try to be tough on him in the post. But many people have tried, and not a lot are successful."
Gallinari's game is a skeleton key that can fit any offense, but with his 32nd birthday coming in August, his free-agency appeal likely only extends to contenders. The Thunder exceeded expectations this season, but they aren't in that tier. The Miami Heat, who nearly landed Gallinari at the deadline, are, and they have the spending money to splurge on a short-term, big-money deal.
Prediction: Gallinari signs a two-year deal with a player option with the Heat.
Davis Bertans, Washington Wizards
The 2019-20 campaign became a personal launching pad for Davis Bertans.
After three seasons as a semi-interesting reserve with the San Antonio Spurs, an offseason trade to the Wizards bumped him up the food chain and showed the impact he could make in a (relatively) featured role. Prior to the season's suspension, he splashed 200 triples at a 42.4 percent clip.
Considering he's a 6'10" big who split his minutes between the 4 (84 percent) and 5 (16), he gave the Wizards a massive improvement in spacing. Washington averaged an extra 7.1 points per 100 possessions with him than without.
Teams took notice and made trade pitches to get him, according to Sports Illustrated's Chris Mannix. But the Wizards said they wouldn't trade him, and they didn't, which should set Bertans' bank account up for a substantial increase. B/R's Michael Scotto reported in February that Bertans could fetch a salary in the $15 million to $17 million range, and every indication is that Washington will be on the other end of that deal.
Prediction: Bertans signs four-year deal with the Wizards.
Joe Harris, Brooklyn Nets
The Nets gave Joe Harris his first real opportunity, and he's been rewarding them with buckets ever since. Given the massive overhaul the organization has undergone over his tenure—highlighted by last summer's arrivals of Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving—it's little surprise that he'd like to be involved with Brooklyn's next chapter.
"It would mean everything," Harris told YES Network's Michael Grady of re-signing. "I look back just over four years ago coming to Brooklyn, getting an opportunity to play here, to learn as a young player to play through my mistakes and be given a niche in this league. And I've always loved New York and I love living in Brooklyn."
All that said, Harris admitted in the same interview that "it's a business at the end of the day, and there are things you can't control." That's where this reunion could get complicated.
Brooklyn's focus is already elsewhere, as the organization is reportedly hunting for a third star. Meanwhile, Harris has positioned himself for a major pay raise after seemingly swishing every shot he attempts. That's hyperbolic, of course, but Harris is one of only 35 players with 400-plus triples since 2017-18, and his 62.4 true shooting percentage ranks second in that group.
Plenty of teams will have interest in adding Harris, and with the Nets focused on other endeavors, a shooting-starved squad like the San Antonio Spurs can make him their priority and offer him a deal that reaches beyond Brooklyn's comfort zone.
Prediction: Harris signs three-year deal with the Spurs.
All statistics via Basketball Reference unless otherwise noted.