2021 NBA Free Agency: Top Players and Latest Salary-Cap Info for Each Team

Philip LindseyContributor IMay 2, 2021

2021 NBA Free Agency: Top Players and Latest Salary-Cap Info for Each Team

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    Nick Wass/Associated Press

    This summer, the NBA will be ready to return to some semblance of normalcy after another unorthodox season. As of today, the playoffs are just three weeks away, and the play-in tournament starts on Tuesday, May 18.

    Soon, the conference brackets will be set, leaving the teams on the outside looking in to prepare a course of action for this year's free agency. The playoffs will be more competitive than many fans may have expected, but next season will be even more interesting because the teams will have to contend with another shortened offseason.

    However, many teams don't have the available cap space to make a big splash in a free-agent market devoid of high-profile superstars. The New York Knicks will be able to create enough to become a plausible destination, especially after a strong season. Still, the latest crop of unrestricted free agents won't be as appealing as some expected if Kawhi Leonard and Chris Paul decide to opt-in to their respective contracts.

    The NBA draft and upcoming free agency won't start until Monday, Aug. 2, but it's not too early to take a look at the top players available and the projected cap space for every team.

    All cap figures and player statuses came from Spotrac. There is a full list of pending free agents here.

Top Players Eligible for Free Agency

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    Jim Mone/Associated Press

    DeMar DeRozan, SG, San Antonio Spurs

    DeMar DeRozan has been one of the few bright spots on a young Spurs team that will continue to rebuild next year. The 6'6" guard is a great finisher at the basket and one of the few exceptional mid-range shooters left in the league. Even more, he has improved as a playmaker, averaging 7.4 assists per game. DeRozan has played well enough this season to receive a big max deal, and he has even proved he can be a leader.

             

    Mike Conley, PG, Utah Jazz

    Mike Conley would be a solid option for any team looking for a veteran point guard. The 33-year-old is a decent three-point shooter, averaging 40.7 percent from behind the arc. He can also score well in the paint, run the offense and contribute well on the defense. Although Conley is currently dealing with a hamstring injury, this offseason will be the last time he will be able to demand a blockbuster deal.

          

    Victor Oladipo, SG, Miami Heat

    Victor Oladipo has had a tough few years since he forced LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers to seven games series in the first round of the 2018 NBA playoffs. Ever since, a string of injuries has hampered his chances of cementing himself as a consistent all-star. The 28-year-old recently reaggravated his quad injury, and he has already been traded twice this year. However, the Heat guard is still young, and he has a lot of potential for teams looking for a capable scorer.

Other Notable Unrestricted Free Agents

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    David Zalubowski/Associated Press

    Kyle Lowry, PG, Toronto Raptors
    Andre Drummond, C, Los Angeles Lakers
    Dennis Schroder, PG, Los Angeles Lakers
    Paul Millsap, PF, Denver Nuggets
    Derrick Rose, PG, New York Knicks
    Richaun Holmes, PF, Sacramento Kings
    Tim Hardaway Jr, SG, Dallas Mavericks
    Evan Fournier, SG, Boston Celtics
    Kelly Oubre Jr., SF, Golden State Warriors
    Lou Williams, SG, Atlanta Hawks

    Many of the most touted names like Jayson Tatum or Donovan Mitchell have already signed max contracts. But John Collins, Jarrett Allen, Lonzo Ball, Lauri Markkanen and Duncan Robinson are all restricted free agents to keep an eye on this summer. 

    There are also a host of unrestricted free agents who could be a suitable addition to teams looking to bolster their lineups next season. If the Lakers can salvage their playoff push this year, it will be interesting to see where Drummond and Schroder will land. Similarly, The Knick's resurgence in the East could make Rose a hot commodity as his leadership and scoring have helped the team tremendously. Meanwhile, Fournier and Williams could feasibly make the jump to an organization hoping to compete for a championship.

    Lowry has to be one of the biggest names among the point guards who will be available this summer, but it's hard to tell where he will end up. The 35-year-old may have possibly signed his last max contract with the Raptors, and this seems like the end of his tenure in Toronto. Nevertheless, he could still steady playmaking and playoff experience will entice someone to sign him. 

Projected Salary-Cap Space for Each Team

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    Vincent Carchietta/Associated Press

    New York Knicks: $711,771

    Washington Wizards: $-7,894,803

    Indiana Pacers: $-9,079,757

    Los Angeles Lakers: $-9,491,317

    Memphis Grizzlies: $-11,088,167

    Phoenix Suns: $-12,414,121

    Portland Trail Blazers: $-14,724,135

    Denver Nuggets: $-15,032,670

    Philadelphia 76ers: $-16,745,671

    Cleveland Cavaliers: $-16,831,704

    Minnesota Timberwolves: $-18,850,717

    Utah Jazz: $-20,870,545

    Boston Celtics: $-22,128,603

    Sacramento Kings: $-26,087,225

    Detroit Pistons: $-27,414,486

    Milwaukee Bucks: $-32,983,667

    San Antonio Spurs: $-34,803,238

    Dallas Mavericks: $-35,349,751

    Los Angeles Clippers: $-36,411,248

    Charlotte Hornets: $-36,678,582

    Oklahoma City Thunder: $-37,293,665

    Golden State Warriors: $-51,385,789

    Brooklyn Nets: $-55,824,236

    Chicago Bulls: $-59,888,605

    Atlanta Hawks: $-60,358,493

    Toronto Raptors: $-63,393,498

    New Orleans Pelicans: $-65,338,898

    Houston Rockets: $-71,936,461

    Orlando Magic: $-72,513,700

    Miami Heat: $-102,797,761

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