The NBA free agency frenzy has come and gone, but the chatter about who the biggest winners were has just begun.
There are potentially some big hierarchy swings in both the Eastern and Western conferences.
Here’s some of the more intriguing moves:
The Los Angeles Clippers arguably came out on top of the summer storm, landing NBA Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard on a four-year, $141 million deal, who then convinced Paul George to join him, via a trade between the Clippers and Oklahoma City.
Leonard and George added to a strong front office, player-friendly coach Doc Rivers, and a core of skilled players including Lou Williams and Pat Beverley makes the Clippers an immediate title contender.
Some of the biggest competition for the Clippers is on the other side of the Staples Center, as the re-tooled Los Angeles Lakers put together a new crew to join future hall-of-famer LeBron James.
It took a lot of players and picks to land six-time all-star Anthony Davis from the New Orleans Pelicans. The Lakers sent away Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram, and Josh Hart.
But the James-Davis paring is an exciting prospect for Lakers fans and a possible avenue toward another championship.
The Lakers fortified the roster with the likes of DeMarcus Cousins on a one-year deal worth $2.3 million. Also coming to town will be Leonard’s teammate from a year ago, Danny Green, who signed as two-year, $30 million dollar contract.
There’s plenty of other notables for the Lakers, including Rajon Rondo, Kyle Kuzma, Tyson Chandler, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and former William Fleming High school star Troy Daniels.
In Brooklyn, the Nets are looking at a very bright future, albeit those lights are still down the road some.
Kevin Durant, who will likely miss a full season following his Achilles injury in last month’s NBA Finals, is the big catch for Brooklyn, followed closely by Kyrie Irving, who will signed a four-year deal worth $141 million.
Durant and Irving have been good friends for years, and have had conversations about teaming up before. The Nets have a young core of talented players including UVa grad Joe Harris. Veteran big man Deandre Jordan will also return after re-signing.
- Jimmy Butler leaving Philadelphia for the Miami Heat.
- The Milwaukee Bucks added by not subtracting, retaining big man Brook Lopez and forward Kris Middleton.
- The Philadelphia 76ers lost Butler and former Cave Spring star J.J. Redick, but will still be one of the conference favorites with big man Al Horford and flashy guard Josh Richardson joining the cause, alongside forward Tobias Harris
- Speaking of Redick, he will be one of the veterans helping the molding of the Pelicans, who have the three former Lakers, as well as first-round picks, Nickeil Alexander Walker (from Virginia Tech), Jaxson Hayes and Zion Williamson.
New question marks emerge around league
- As usual, the New York Knicks having plenty of issues still hanging around. Other than bringing in forward Julius Randle and drafting R.J. Barrett, the Knicks missed out on much of the offseason excitement.
- The Golden State Warriors’ dynasty, if it is to remain a dynasty, will have some faces helping the cause. Gone are Durant, Andre Iguodala, and Cousins. Klay Thompson will miss at least half of the season, although, they did add D’Angelo Russell from Brookly.
And don’t forget, Steph Curry and Draymond Green are still around.