With Free Agency beginning on Sunday, July 1st, we take a look at the top free agent point guards on the market:
1. Chris Paul, Houston Rockets – Unrestricted
17-18 Stats: 18.6 PPG, 7.9 APG, 5.4 RPG, 1.7 SPG, 0.2 BPG, 46.0 FG%, 38.0 3PT%, 91.9 FT%
Potential Destinations: Rockets
Our Take: There is no scenario that I could see where Chris Paul wouldn’t be re-signing with the Rockets. He’s the Rockets number one priority heading into free agency, and Chris Paul will be coming into the season hungry wanting another chance at beating the Warriors in the Western Conference Finals.
2 Rajon Rondo, New Orleans Pelicans – Unrestricted
17-18 Stats: 8.3 PPG, 8.2 APG, 4.0 RPG, 1.1 SPG, 0.2 BPG, 46.8 FG%, 33.3 3PT%, 54.3 FT%
Potential Destinations: Pelicans, Suns
Our Take: I think the Pelicans would be insane not to re-sign Rajon Rondo with the way he played in the playoffs. Even at 32 years old, Rondo can still be a good point guard in this league, and fits in perfectly with the Pelicans and Anthony Davis. However, look for the Suns to make a strong push for Rondo. The Suns can use a veteran to go with their young pieces, and Rondo is a unselfish player who would be a great distributor to a guy like DeAndre Ayton.
3. Isaiah Thomas, Los Angeles Lakers – Unrestricted
17-18 Stats: 15.2 PPG, 4.8 APG, 2.1 RPG, 0.5 SPG, 0.1 BPG, 37.3 FG%, 29.3 3PT%, 89.3 FT%
Potential Destinations: Magic, Pistons
Our Take: I can’t see the Lakers re-signing Isaiah Thomas (especially with LeBron potentially going there). They have Lonzo Ball as their future point guard, and don’t need Isaiah Thomas disrupting his development. I see Isaiah Thomas signing a deal with a team that doesn’t have a point guard, and needs scoring from that position. He will sign a one year prove it deal with either the Magic or Pistons, and then enter free agency in 2018-2019 with a bigger market for him depending on how healthy he is and how well he plays.
4. Fred VanVleet, Toronto Raptors – Restricted
17-18 Stats: 8.6 PPG, 3.2 APG, 2.4 RPG, 0.9 SPG, 0.3 BPG, 42.6 FG%, 41.4 3PT%, 83.2 FT%
Potential Destinations: Raptors, Magic
Our Take: Fred VanVleet is probably going to be the most overpaid player in this free agent class. He had a great year off the bench for Toronto, but I don’t see his ceiling getting higher than a good backup point guard. There aren’t a lot of teams out there that need point guards besides the Magic, so I don’t think the market for VanVleet will be as big as he thinks (wants $12-16 million per year). In the end, I think Toronto signs him for around $9-10 million per year, and dig themselves into an even bigger financial hole.
5. Elfrid Payton, Phoenix Suns – Restricted
17-18 Stats: 12.7 PPG, 6.2 APG, 4.3 RPG, 1.3 SPG, 0.3 BPG, 49.3 FG%, 32.6 3PT%, 64.9 FT%
Potential Destinations: Pistons, Hornets, Jazz, Lakers
Our Take: The Suns are reportedly not going to re-sign Elfrid Payton, so I think this ends his time as a starting point guard in the league. The only team he can start at would be possibly the Pistons, who could be a destination for him. I also look to teams like the Hornets, Jazz, and Lakers who can use some depth at the point guard position to sign Payton to a cheap deal.
6. Dante Exum, Utah Jazz – Restricted
17-18 Stats: 8.1 PPG, 3.1 APG, 1.9 RPG, 0.6 SPG, 0.2 BPG, 48.3 FG%, 27.8 3PT%, 80.6 FT%
Potential Destinations: Jazz, Magic
Our Take: I don’t think that the Jazz are ready to give up on Dante Exum, who was once a highly regarded prospect. Exum is still only going to be 23 years old at the beginning of the 2018-2019 season, and still has some value. I think in the end, Exum will re-sign with Utah, but don’t be surprised if a team like the Magic or another team swoop in and offer a little bit of a ridiculous contract to Exum, which the Jazz may be reluctant to match.
7. Yogi Ferrell, Dallas Mavericks – Restricted
17-18 Stats: 10.2 PPG, 2.5 APG, 3.0 RPG, 0.8 SPG, 0.1 BPG, 42.6 FG%, 37.3 3PT%, 79.6 FT%
Potential Destinations: Jazz, Trail Blazers, Pelicans, Pistons, Magic
Our Take: The Mavericks have no room for Ferrell at the point guard position after drafting Doncic, so I see him going to a playoff team as a backup point guard. The Jazz, Pelicans, and Trail Blazers could all use Ferrell, so I can see him signing a cheap deal with one of those teams. Of course I also have to mention the Pistons and Magic, who are so weak at point guard they might be desperate and overpay.
8. Seth Curry, Dallas Mavericks – Unrestricted
17-18 Stats: DNP – Broken Leg
16-17 Stats: 12.8 PPG, 2.7 APG, 2.6 RPG, 1.1 SPG, 0.1 BPG, 48.1 FG%, 42.5 3PT%, 85.0 FT%
Potential Destinations: Mavericks, Warriors, Rockets
Our Take: I think Seth Curry is likely going to sign a cheap one year deal wherever he goes. Whatever team gets him is going to get a great scorer and shooter off the bench. The big questions is his health, which is why I have him signing a cheap one year deal. In the end, I think the Mavs re-sign him, but look for the Warriors and Rockets to possibly sign another bench scorer. The Mavs would likely using Curry as more of a two-guard, and three-point specialist.
9. Shabazz Napier, Portland Trail Blazers – Unrestricted
17-18 Stats: 8.7 PPG, 2.0 APG, 2.3 RPG, 1.1 SPG, 0.2 BPG, 42.0 FG%, 37.6 3PT%, 84.1 FT%
Potential Destinations: Trail Blazers, Pistons
Our Take: I’m a huge fan of Shabazz Napier, as he played great when Damian Lillard was injured last season. Since he played well as a backup point guard for Portland last year, I think he re-signs there. However, you can never be too sure that a point guard needy team like the Pistons won’t throw more money at him than he deserves. I don’t think that will happen, but the market for Napier as a backup point guard may be bigger than we think.