NBA free agency is winding down for this year, and here are five players who landed with the wrong team.
In NBA free agency, as with any sport, money ultimately talks for players. Veterans willing to take less or a shorter deal to chase a title are the exceptions, but players in their prime can’t be blamed for going to the highest bidder.
But that doesn’t mean the player, or his agent as his representative trying to maximize commission on a new contract, make the right choice all the time. Playing time, role and general fit are all key factors, and can lead to free agent busts when it’s all said and done.
The most notable names in NBA free agency this year are spoken for, and here are five players that landed with the wrong team.
5. Nick Young to the Golden State Warriors
At first glance, Young’s one-year, $5.2 million deal with the defending champion looks good for both sides. “Swaggy P” is coming off a rebound season with the Lakers, where he averaged 13.2 points per game, made over 40 percent of his 3-pointers and showed some effort on defense. All of that fits nicely with the Warriors, if he can keep it up of course.
Young’s role will probably not be huge as a bench piece for Golden State, but setting aside ego and being willing to keep the ball moving is a requirement to fit in on the offensive end. He has already joked that passing is the “point guard’s job”, but there may be a vein of truth to it based on his career history.
It seems the market for Young didn’t include any multi-year offers, even in a fairly thin market for shooting guards, and extra motivation in a contract year should be noted. It’s hard to imagine that playing at the end of the Warriors’ bench improves the market for him next summer. Winning a title may be a priority for him at this stage of his career, but Young surely could have at least found a more prominent role on another team.