The NBA transfer market started last Monday, with exchanges between franchises, the Draft, then the opening of the crazy period of « free agents » (free players). After a week of negotiations, a lot of things have already happened on the other side of the Atlantic …
The Lakers got a little stronger
There can, and should, be a lot of movement in the League. But within days, the Los Angeles Lakers have sent a pretty clear message: they will be favorites to their own succession next season. Not only will the Californian franchise retain its stars LeBron James, Anthony Davis (except for a huge surprise) and a few solid players, like Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Alex Caruso, but it has also managed a « trade » to bring in the German leader Dennis Schröder (ex-Oklahoma City), she snatched inside Montrezl Harrell – voted best sixth man last season – from the Clippers, and signed a contract to the very experienced Marc Gasol (ex-Toronto), NBA champion in 2019.
In the opposite direction, Rajon Rondo (Atlanta), Danny Green (Philadelphia) or JaVale McGee (Cleveland) left, but neither of them was, so to speak, an essential player in the workforce.
Things have changed for the French
As indicated last Monday, Evan Fournier activated his « player option » in Orlando for a final season, just like Nicolas Batum in Charlotte. Except that the second was released from his contract in the process (while being paid), which means that he will be able to sign with the team of his choice. The announcement should fall very, very soon.
In lack of playing time in Boston, the pivot Vincent Poirier was transferred to Oklahoma City, where he will play (perhaps) with the young point guard Theo Maledon, drafted in the second round by the Thunder, unless he leaves in an exchange. Killian Hayes, the other tricolor nugget, was drafted in seventh position by Detroit. He will meet his compatriot Sekou Doumbouya there.
Other notable movements
Golden State, who learned of Klay Thompson’s serious injury, tried to respond with the arrival of winger Kelly Oubre Jr (ex-Phoenix). Milwaukee recovered Jrue Holiday (ex-New Orleans) in the lead, parting with Eric Bledsoe in exchange. Another prominent leader, veteran Chris Paul left Oklahoma City for Phoenix. Gordon Hayward left Boston free to sign a massive $ 120 million 4-year contract with Charlotte, Spaniard Serge Ibaka (ex-Toronto) went to the Clippers, and Danilo Gallinari left Oklahoma City to go to Atlanta. We should also note the astonishing transfer of Argentinian leader Facundo Campazzo, who played at Real Madrid and was never drafted, to Denver.
The transfer market is also very juicy « extensions », either via a max extension, or via a new signing as a free player, but in the same franchise. In this non-exhaustive list, let us note that the rear Fred VanVleet has re-enlisted in Toronto for $ 85 million over 4 years, Joe Harris in Brooklyn for 75 million over 4 years, Jayson Tatum in Boston for 195 million (yes, yes) on 5 years, Donovan Mitchell in Utah for 163 million over 5 years, De’Aron Fox in Sacramento for 163 million over 5 years as well, and Malik Beasley in Minnesota for 60 million over 4 years. Enough to see the future with a smile.