June 22, 2016, 8:53 am
The Magic, Lakers and Pistons reportedly have interested in signing Al Horford this offseason, and they won’t be the only ones. While all eyes will be on Kevin Durant this summer, Horford is the next name on most team’s free agent wish list, so expect him to visit more than just these three teams.
It’s no mystery why Horford will be in such demand. He’s the model of the modern NBA big man, as he can switch onto smaller players and protect the rim on defense while also being able to make plays for others and shoot from distance on the offensive end. Along with Paul Millsap, Horford formed one of the more versatile front lines in all of basketball, unlocking a variety of lineup combinations for the Hawks.
Many of the teams listed, however, seem like odd fits for Horford. Andre Drummond is the current cornerstone of the Pistons organization, and the team has already surrounded him with versatile forwards in Marcus Morris and Tobias Harris. Horford would certainly be an upgrade over those two options, but it might not be the best allocation of resources for the franchise. Meanwhile, the Lakers have needs up and down their roster, but would have to sell Horford on the prestige of LA and the hope of acquiring a second star.
Of the teams mentioned, only the Magic seem to make much sense for Horford. The team’s two biggest needs last season where outside shooting and rim protection, which he offers in spades. If the team were to slot Horford into their starting lineup instead of Nikola Vucevic they could quickly become a playoff threat in the East under new coach Frank Vogel.
July 18, 2019, 2:05 pmThanasis AntetokounmpoSF, Milwaukee Bucks
The Bucks have made their signing of Thanasis Antetokounmpo official.
Antetokounmpo is believed to be on a two-year deal that is fully guaranteed for the veteran's minimum. Antetokounmpo has just two NBA appearances to his name, both coming back in 2016 with the Knicks. It's unlikely that he'll play much, if at all, though at least he'll get to hang with his MVP little brother.
Source: Milwaukee Bucks
July 18, 2019, 1:59 pmRondae Hollis-JeffersonSF, Toronto Raptors
The Raptors have announced the signing of Rondae Hollis-Jefferson.
Hollis-Jefferson had a tough season in Brooklyn, suffering an offseason adductor strain and then falling out of the rotation when he was ready to play. The Raptors will take a one-year flier on a player that can capably defend multiple positions while bringing great energy, and he'll fit in with the team's defensive identity. RHJ is only a year removed from being a top-100 fantasy player but it's unlikely that he holds standard-league value in a reserve role for Toronto. Deep-league managers can consider Hollis-Jefferson a late-round flier.
Source: Toronto Raptors
July 18, 2019, 1:41 pmKelly Oubre Jr.SF, Phoenix Suns
The Suns have officially re-signed Kelly Oubre.
Oubre is headed back to Phoenix on a two-year, $30 million deal and lost out on a bigger payday as teams alternately gobbled up cap space or played a long waiting game in free agency, leaving one of the top RFAs on the board to settle for a deal that clocks in below expectations. Oubre missed the end of the season because of thumb surgery but blossomed in Phoenix, averaging 16.9 points, 4.9 rebounds, 1.6 assists, 1.4 steals, 1.0 blocks and 1.7 3s on .453 shooting. That was good for top-50 value, and while that might be too lofty to expect a repeat without some breaks (the efficiency is a definite question mark), it's clear that Oubre is finally on a team that will commit to his future and there will be enough playing time to make him a late-middle round option in fantasy drafts.
Source: Phoenix Suns
July 18, 2019, 1:37 pmDavid NwabaSF, Brooklyn Nets
The Nets have announced the signing of David Nwaba.
Nwaba will head to Brooklyn on a two-year deal after bouncing around over his first three NBA seasons. It's a nice pickup for the Nets, who will get a hard-nosed forward that's capable of defending and rebounding with tenacity. Nwaba's poor shooting might not do him favors in Brooklyn's system, but he's the type of hustle player that coaches tend to like. Expect him to play a part in Kenny Atkinson's deep rotation, though fantasy value is probably out of the question when everyone is healthy.
Source: Brooklyn Nets
July 18, 2019, 12:42 pmJR SmithSG, Cleveland Cavaliers
J.R. Smith will meet with the Bucks on Thursday, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic.
This is the first team other than the Lakers, who have already been deemed an unlikely landing spot, to be connected to Smith. Milwaukee is looking for another wing shooter and Smith would fit the bill in a perfect world, though it's unlikely that he would play a major role for any team after sitting out since November.
Source: Shams Charania on Twitter
July 18, 2019, 12:39 pmKyle LowryPG, Toronto Raptors
Kyle Lowry has undergone a procedure to repair the tendon in his left thumb, per Adrian Wojnarowski.
Lowry battled with either a left thumb sprain or dislocation (depending on who you believe) in the playoffs and often spoke of how he struggled to handle the ball. It didn't seem to matter too much as Lowry shot 42 percent from deep over the Eastern Conference Finals and Finals, but this procedure is far from surprising. The point guard is still hoping to be ready for Team USA training camp and the FIBA World Cup, so we are not looking at a lengthy recovery here.
Source: Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter
July 18, 2019, 12:31 pmNaz ReidC, Minnesota Timberwolves
Naz Reid has signed a multi-year deal with the Wolves.
Reid was originally expected to sign a two-way deal, and this might be the fastest conversion to a standard contract ever. Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic is reporting that it is a four-year deal worth a max of $6.1 million, with a full guarantee on the first season. Reid averaged 12.5 points, 4.7 boards and 2.0 assists in just 18.3 mpg at Summer League and looked like one of the better big men at the Vegas circuit. The Wolves are obviously set at center in the long term, but Reid could definitely emerge as the backup with a little more seasoning.
Source: Minnesota Timberwolves
July 18, 2019, 12:28 pmShane LarkinPG, International
Shane Larkin has agreed to a 'lucrative' deal to return to Andalou Efes of Turkey.
Larkin was reported to have some interest from guard-needy teams like Detroit, Orlando and OKC, but he'll stay in Europe to collect a big check and play in a starring role. Last season's BSL Finals MVP, Larkin could pop up again in free agency next summer.
July 18, 2019, 12:24 pmShaquille HarrisonPG, Chicago Bulls
Shaq Harrison has agreed to a one-year deal to return to the Bulls.
Harrison was waived by the team a couple weeks ago but will head back to Chicago. There's not much room left at point guard, but Harrison emerged as a lengthy player who's capable of guarding opposing wings last season and that figures to be his role going forward. He had a standard-league finish for the depleted Bulls last season and is someone to remember for silly season if Chicago is tanking hard again.
Source: Shams Charania on Twitter
July 17, 2019, 10:12 pmLuke KornetPF-C, Chicago Bulls
Luke Kornet has inked a deal with the Chicago Bulls for two years worth $4.5 million according to Shams Charania of The Athletic.
Kornet is another stretch big that will fit into the Bulls' system similar to how Lauri Markkanen does. He is a 36-percent shooter from beyond the arc in his career and shoots at will, so he should be a nice role player for an improved Bulls team.
Source: Shams Charania on Twitter