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Top 10 Free Agents in 2017

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The beginning of free agency is always a hectic time for teams and players around the league. In the past decade, we’ve seen some pretty big name superstars leave town and join another franchise with hopes of cementing their name into NBA history by winning a championship, or in some cases, leave just for the money. This year, there are some huge names on the market ready to be wined and dined by any and every organization that can get a call back from their agent. Here are the Top 10 free agents for the upcoming 2017 summer.

  1. Kevin Durant – Golden State Warriors (Player Option)

Everyone and their grandmother gave this man grief for leaving the Oklahoma City Thunder last summer and heading west to the Golden State Warriors, a team who had just knocked him out of the playoffs after blowing a 3-1 WCF lead. But for all you KD haters out there, get your popcorn ready because he could possibly be heading somewhere else. Durant’s contract he signed in 2016 allows him to opt-out of his deal with the Warriors after one year if he so chooses. Now the chances of him leaving the Warriors are just about as likely as the next player on this list, so don’t get your hopes up too high about KD dawning your favorite team’s jersey come October.

2. Stephen Curry – Golden State Warriors (Unrestricted FA)

Here we have another member of the “Not Likely to Leave” club. Curry IS the Warriors franchise. Without him leading his team, the Warriors would’ve probably never made the finals, let alone win one and go back twice in a row. He’s the reigning back to back MVP and the Baby Faced Assassin will most definitely be re-joining the Dubs come summer time and will undoubtedly be there for many years too come.

3. Chris Paul – Los Angeles Clippers (Player Option)

Now CP3 is a whole different story compared to the previous entries on our list. At the young for life but getting old for basketball age of 31, Paul is heading into the stage of his career where his prime will begin to fade and it’ll get harder and harder to do what he’s done for all of his career up to this point. That of course is being the most pure point guard in the league by a wide margin. Paul has been on the Clippers since 2011 and even with all of the talent around him, he and his crew just can’t seem to get it done. Unless the owner/GM of the Clippers can bring some more talent to his aide, its hard to see Paul rocking a Clips’ jersey for much longer. But for now, I don’t see the Clippers letting a player like Paul go just yet.

4. Blake Griffin – Los Angeles Clippers (Player Option)

Yep, the Clippers have yet another one of their biggest stars possibly packing their bags and moving out over summer. Griffin was drafted by the Clippers in 2009 and has played great, but has also missed a ton of time due to a plague of injuries. In fact, Griffin missed his entire rookie season due to an injury and has not played a full 82 game season in his career to date. So far this year, Griffin has only played in 44/64 of the Clippers games but has played very well despite all the time missed. Heading into his 9th season next year, the Clippers will have to decide if they want to risk extending Griffin’s contract with hopes that his injury days are behind him, or if they’re ready to part ways with the 5x all star forward.

5. Gordon Hayward – Utah Jazz (Player Option)

The Jazz will have to open their checkbook and pay a hefty price to keep Hayward this coming offseason. Fresh off his first all star appearance, Hayward has the Jazz sitting at 4th place in the West just behind Rockets, Spurs, and Warriors. Averaging over 22 points and 5 rebounds per game this season, Gordon is starting to hit the prime of his career and will be a major target for teams looking to add a player of his caliber to their roster next season. I do believe the Jazz will shell out the moolah to keep their franchises best player since the Karl Malone/John Stockton days back in the 90s.

6. Kyle Lowry – Toronto Raptors (Player Option)

One half off the best Raptors tandem since Carter and McGrady, Lowry will likely re-up with Toronto barring a huge offer from a franchise in need of a starting point guard. Lowry is now a three time all star for his team and is putting up career best numbers in points, rebounds, and assists for the Raptors this year. After his counterpart DeMar DeRozan resigned with the Raps’ last summer, it would make sense for him to stay with the franchise and try to bring the city its first NBA championship in its short history.

7.  Paul Millsap – Atlanta Hawks (Player Option)

After being on and off the trading block this season, the Hawks decided to keep Millsap for the remainder of the season. While Millsap recently turned 32 in February, his play doesn’t seem to be slowing down at all. Staying steady in the rebounds and assists, he is having the best offensive season of his career, even if only by a small margin. Even though he’s playing at a great efficiency, after all the trade rumors this season, don’t expect to see Millsap in Atlanta next season unless he’s on a visiting team.

8. Serge Ibaka – Toronto Raptors (Unrestricted FA)

Traded from the Thunder, traded from the Magic, Ibaka has been on the move quite a lot this year. Landing in Toronto, though has seemed to be a good fit for Serge. Putting up 16 points and 7 rebounds in his short 7 game career in Toronto, the Raptors were excited about getting a stretch power forward that is also a defensive minded player. If the Raptors can make a strong push in the playoffs, I expect Ibaka to rejoin the pair of DeRozan and Lowry and try to dethrone the Cavaliers as the East’s top team.

9.  Jrue Holiday – New Orleans Pelicans (Unrestricted FA)

Although Jrue has never been a huge name in the league, he has played well for the Pelicans this season. Unfortunately, throughout his short career, Holiday has been plagued with injuries in what seems like every season since he entered the league. Averting 16 points and 7 assists per game should be enough to convince the Pelicans to want to resign Holiday for a few more years. With the addition of DeMarcus Cousins after the all star break and having Anthony Davis as your power forward, you would believe Jrue would like to stay and play with those dominate bigs.

10. Danilo Gallinari – Denver Nuggets (Player Option)

Having never logged a full seasons worth of play in his 8 year career, Gallinari is still trying to find the durability to start all 82 games. Playing in 51/64 games for the Nuggets this year, he’s averaging almost 18 points and 5 rebounds per game, but his shooting percentage is what will attract teams this summer. This season Danilo is shooting the best percentage in every category since his rookie season, which he only played 28 games of and started just 2. The Nuggets haven’t had much luck this season, currently sitting at 29-35, just barley holding onto the 8th seed in the West. Unless the Nuggets can push for a solid seating in the playoffs and make some noise, Gallinari might decide that he wants to go play for a team with real title contention.

About Emanuel Godina

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