Tuesday , Jun , 30 , 2009 Oly Sandor

Utah’s posts setting market for top free agent power forwards and centres

You can’t teach height, so, fair or not, a market will always exist for free agent power forwards and centres. Whether they can play is sometimes irrelevant. For instance, the Seattle Sonics rewarded 2 point per game scorer Jim Mcllvane with a seven-year, 33 million dollar contract and forever alienated superstar Shawn Kemp. More recently, former Knick GM Isiah Thomas gave Jerome James a five-year, 30 million dollar gift for performing in one playoff series …


Utah's posts setting market for top free agent power forwards and centresYou can’t teach height, so, fair or not, a market will always exist for free agent power forwards and centres.

Whether they can play is sometimes irrelevant. For instance, the Seattle Sonics rewarded 2 point per game scorer Jim Mcllvane with a seven-year, 33 million dollar contract and forever alienated superstar Shawn Kemp. More recently, former Knick GM Isiah Thomas gave Jerome James a five-year, 30 million dollar gift for performing in one playoff series.

Fortunately, there are several impressive free agent posts in 2009. Here are HoopsVibe’s The Blogs top choices: 

1. Carlos Boozer, Paul Milsap, and Mehmet Okur 

Utah’s bigs will set the market. After much humming and hawing, Boozer apparently won’t exercise his player’s option and will instead play the final year of his contract at 12 million dollars, while Okur is also having second thoughts about opting-out and seeking greener pastures elsewhere.

Millsap, however, is the wildcard. The undersized four-man has some serious upside and, even as a restricted free agent, will receive considerable offers. Look for Oklahoma City to back up the brinks truck and attempt to add another talented piece to their young nucleus.

2. Lamar Odom 

Simply put, the lanky forward can do everything: rebound, pass, defend, score, and, for good measure, run the offense as a power forward.

In fact, I had issues listing Odom as a four-man because he can play all five positions. Odom seems willing to give the world champion Los Angeles Lakers a hometown discount, but the purple-and-gold have luxury tax issues and may be forced to part with their star sixth man.

3. Anderson Varejao 

‘Sideshow’ Bob will opt-out and seek a multi-year pact at a million or two above the Mid Level Exception. And Varejao’s rebounding, defense, shot blocking, and general peskiness will draw offers from contenders.

4. Antonio McDyess 

Mark ‘Dyess’ down for a double-double each night. After re-joining Detroit mid-season, the polite veteran posted a workmanlike 10 points and 10 rebounds per game. McDyess could replace Yao in Houston, where he, coincidentally, has his off-season home.

5. Rasheed Wallace 

Wallace, once of the game’s most talented players, will likely take the MLE if offered by a contender. The North Carolina grad could take his three-point range and fade-away jumper to Cleveland, Orlando, or San Antonio.

Who is the top free agent power forward and centre? Get at us with your thoughts in the comment box below and come back to HoopsVibe The Blog for more NBA tidbits. Photo courtesy of Kris247.