|12-22-2009, 10:52 AM||#1 (permalink)|
rap rap rap raptors
Join Date: Nov 2009
Best free-agent signings (hedo is 4th)
Note: Free agents who re-sign with the same team are not included on this list.
1. Chauncey Billups, Pistons; July 17, 2002
Billups was coming off a solid season in Minnesota when he became a free agent in 2002, but he had been with five teams in five NBA seasons and nobody was predicting what was to come. After signing a six-year, $35 million deal with the Pistons, he led them to a championship in 2004, winning Finals MVP honors, and a Finals appearance in 2005. He worked the same magic in Denver last season, transforming the Nuggets from an offensive-obsessed team to a more mature group that reached the Western Conference finals.
2. Steve Nash, Suns; July 14, 2004
Dallas owner Mark Cuban considered Nash too injury-prone and too old at 30, so he let him slide back to Phoenix. The Suns got him for six years and $66 million, money Dallas used to sign center Erick Dampier instead. Nash went on to win two league MVP awards, and while the Suns fell short of reaching the Finals, they became the league's most entertaining team and helped transform the thinking of some NBA coaches with their up-tempo style.
3. Bruce Bowen, Spurs; July 31, 2001
He had finally established himself in Miami, earning second-team All-Defensive honors after knocking around the league for five seasons, when the Spurs signed him to a two-year, $1.5 million deal. There were no reports of cannon fire or confetti celebrating that meager transaction for a 30-year-old journeymen -- that sort of thing came after Bowen went on to play a vital role on three championship teams. Bowen was the kind of semi-dirty player opposing fans hated but secretly admired. He earned five consecutive first-team All-Defensive accolades and turned himself into a legitimate three-point threat. The phrase "gets in your grill" was probably invented with him in mind.
4. Hedo Turkoglu, Magic; July 14, 2004
The versatile forward had five productive seasons in Orlando, earning the Most Improved Player award in 2007-08 and playing a crucial role in its run to the Finals last season -- nice return for his six-year, $36.8 million mid-level exception deal (Turkoglu opted out of the final year and became a free agent last summer). The five-year, $53 million deal he got from Toronto as part of a sign-and-trade with Orlando last July is a different story -- and so far not a promising one for the Raptors -- but he paid off for the Magic.
5. Robert Horry, Spurs; July 24, 2003
Big Shot Rob had already won five championship rings when he signed a two-year, $10.5 million contract with San Antonio. He found room for two more with the Spurs, in 2005 and '07 (the latter after he re-signed). The Spurs got their money's worth based on one performance alone: With the 2005 Finals tied at two games apiece, Horry scored 21 points in the fourth quarter and overtime and made the go-ahead three pointer in the final seconds of San Antonio's victory at Detroit.
link: Shaq, Kevin Garnett, Pau Gasol among big names traded in 2000s - 2000s: The Decade in Sports - SI.com
|12-22-2009, 12:47 PM||#4 (permalink)|
Captain of the Jamario Moon fan club.
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Electric Avenue
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