Thursday, July 2, 2009

NBA Free Agency: Day 2

Yesterday, I wrote about the failures of Pistons President of Basketball Operations, Joe Dumars. Ironically, I'll be writing about him again. Last night, the first full day of free agency, the Detroit Pistons agreed to terms with Bulls SG Ben Gordon, and Bucks PF Charlie Villanueva. Nothing can be officially signed until July 8th, but Ben Gordon is apparently going to sign a 5 year/$55 million deal, and Charlie Villanueva will sing a 5 year/$40 million deal.

In my opinion, Ben Gordon is being way overpaid, as will earn roughly $11 million per year. In his last contract, Ben Gordon earned roughly $6 million a year, so he's almost getting double the earnings from his previous contract.  I think Villanueva is also being overpaid. Rumor has it, other teams were interested in signing Villanueva at the mid-level exception, which is about $5.6 million. So the Pistons pay him $2.4 million extra? Villanueva and Gordon have a good offensive game, but both don't play a lick of defense. For a team that is trying to rebuild from a disappointing year, adding overpaid players who can't play defense is not the solution...this is yet another mistake by Joe Dumars in my opinion.

I also don't understand why the team even brought in Ben Gordon...isn't he a shooting guard? Correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't the Pistons have a big problem last year because they had two shooting guards in Allen Iverson and Richard Hamilton? How did that work out? By bringing in Ben Gordon, it appears Allen Iverson won't be back in a Pistons uniform, which comes as no surprise. Nonetheless, the Pistons still have Richard Hamilton, so the team is right back to where it started. Unless the team trades away Richard Hamilton, another controversy is waiting to happen. By adding Charlie Villanueva, the Pistons must believe Rasheed Wallace won't be back. Wallace, an unrestricted free agent, has gotten interest from many other teams. All-in-all, this deal makes no sense--overpaid, defenseless players who won't help the team in the long run.

Accorinding to many sources, Trevor Ariza may be on his way out of Los Angeles. Apparently, the team isn't willing to give Ariza more than the mid-level exception. I would love Ariza in a Raptors uniform, but it would mean no Shawn Marion. There's no way the Raptors can afford both Marion and Ariza. But Ariza is only 24, and he's got a very promising future in the NBA.

The Raptors have also expressed interest in signing Linas Kleiza at the mid-level exception. I wouldn't mind Kleiza in a Raptors uniform either, and I think he'd give us the bench support we need.

David Lee is also a name that has been flying around the Raptors front office. Lee, who posted 65 double doubles last year, is a restricted free agent. However, he would require a heavy contractfor him to be taken from NY--5 years, $50 million. I think this deal is all speculation, and won't happen. But if it does, I think it's safe to say Chris Bosh will be traded.

The drama continues in NBA free agency. It will be interesting to see what players sign where in these next few days.

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