NBA Free Agency Roundup: Lopez Cashes In, Mavs Make Moves
Another day, another absolute mess in the NBA Free Agency period. Today marked the end of the moratorium on signings, meaning that all of the deals that have been reported were finally allowed to be made official. As mentioned earlier, Dwight Howard to the Brooklyn Nets has been deemed dead, but that didn’t stop a number of other transactions from occurring in the Association.
As suspected once the Howard deal fell through, the Brooklyn Nets signed center Brook Lopez to a four year max contract, worth $60 million. This deal is risky for two reasons. First of all, Lopez played only five games last year due to injuries, so the Nets could be paying $15 million per five games that he is able play. Secondly, he can’t be traded until mid-January under the provisions of the collective bargaining agreement, so the Nets had better hope that Dwight Howard doesn’t like wherever he is moved to. Remember when the NBA missed 16 games because players were making too much? Neither does Billy King, apparently.
The Dallas Mavericks were the biggest winners of the day, scoring a pair of serviceable players. While they were unable to land Deron Williams, they found a much cheaper solution by trading with the Indiana Pacers to land Darren Collison and Dahntay Jones in exchange for big man Ian Mahinmi. Collison will make $2.3 million this year, as opposed to the max money that Williams will make for Brooklyn. This was a financially savvy move in a free agent period marked by excess.
Joining Collison in Dallas is Chris Kaman. Kaman agreed on a one year, $8 million deal to team up with fellow German national team member Dirk Nowitzki in Big D. After the signing he took to Twitter, stating that he loves Texas because everything is bigger in it. Whether or not his game will grow there remains to be seen.
As if Dallas hadn’t done enough on the day, it is also being said that are looking to win the bidding war for Elton Brand, who was released by the Philadelphia 76ers through the league’s amnesty clause. After many lamented the demise of the Dallas Mavericks, it looks like we could see them contend once again in the Western Conference.