5 Players the Denver Nuggets Should Sign in NBA Free Agency 2013
NBA Free Agency 2013: 5 players the Nuggets should sign
The Denver Nuggets have a tough free agency ahead of them. They currently have 11 roster spots filled by contracts. Free agents Andre Iguodala, Corey Brewer, Julyan Stone and Timofey Mozgov can sign with any other team.
Rookies Erick Green and Joffrey Lauvergne are still without contracts. However, Lauvernge is expected to stay outside the country for at least another season to develop. If Green goes under contract, the Nuggets will have a maximum of three roster spots available to fill.
Iguodala, perhaps the most sought after free agent besides Dwight Howard, would be tough for the Nuggets to replace. The 29-year-old opted-out of his last year with the Nuggets that would have guaranteed him $16 million. Head coach Brian Shaw and General Manager Tim Connelly met with Iguodala in Los Angeles on Monday , but the two parties haven’t reached a deal, yet. Iguodala has seen interest from the Detroit Pistons, New Orleans Pelicans, Sacramento Kings, Golden State Warriors and Atlanta Hawks. Since Iguodala played with the Nuggets last season, they can offer him a five-year contract. Yesterday, the Kings offered him a four-year, $56 million contract. After Iguodala declined to make a decision, the Kings pulled their offer. Iguodala obviously doesn’t want to be a part of a rebuilding franchise. He wants a championship. Now.
The Nuggets would ideally re-sign all three player, but they still need to consider their options if they lose them.
According to ESPN's Marc Stein, the salary cap will only rise to $58.5 mil next season. Right now the team has a total of $51.9 million in contracts, leaving them with little room to spare. They can only re-sign Iguodala because of the “Early Bird rule,” which allows teams to spend up to the league's average salary in the first season of a new contract. The Nuggets will need to act aggressively in free agency if they lose Iguodala. If the Nuggets can’t get the three to re-sign, these are the players they should consider picking up.
Jarrett Jack smoked the Denver Nuggets in the 2013 NBA Playoffs averaging 18.8 points and seven assists in six playoff games for his Golden State Warriors. Jack's ability to score would immensely help a team that has struggled shooting from the perimeter. During regular season, Jack shot at .506% from the field. While the Nuggets were the highest scoring team last year, averaging 106 ppg, a majority of those points (57) came from inside the paint. If the Nuggets were to acquire Jack, they would most likely need to get rid of 37-year-old Andre Miller, who has one year left on his contract. Jack has the ability create a real spark off the bench and could immediately make an impact on the Nuggets.
Monta Ellis has proven his elite talent in the NBA. He’s a natural scorer who can also dish-out the ball. He averaged 19 points and six assists last season. Before leaving the Golden State Warriors and joining the Milwaukee Bucks last season, he averaged 25 ppg for the Warriors. Like Jarrett Jack, Ellis would provide an offensive spark from the perimeter that the Denver Nuggets lack. Ellis is consistent from the free throw line, shooting .773% in his past seven NBA seasons. This would tremendously help the Nuggets, who shot a dismal .701%, the 28th best free throw percentage in the NBA last season. Right now Ellis would be a long shot for the Nuggets because of his price tag, but rumor has it he has met with the team this past week.
Kyle Korver is by far the best shooter in the 2013 NBA free agency pool. Last season, Korver shot .457% from downtown, scored 2.6 threes per game and .859 from the free throw line in 30 minutes for the Atlanta Hawks. The Denver Nuggets could really use a player like Korver to open up the offense. Korver would get plenty of open shots kick-out passes from PF Kenneth Faried and Javale McGee. This pick would also make total financial sense for the Nuggets. The 32-year-old made $5 million last year, and expects to make the same, or less, this upcoming season. The Brooklyn Nets aggressively pursued Korver but were unable to land him due monetary restrictions.
25-year-old O.J. Mayo is still trying to find a team that will take his game to the next level. While Mayo is best known for his streaky shooting, he just had his best season with the Dallas Mavericks. Mayo averaged 15.3 points on .407% shooting from three point land and added 4.4 assists per game. Mayo asked for a raise from the Mavericks from his $4.2 million deal for the 2013-14 season, but the Mavericks declined. The Denver Nuggets couldn't offer Mayo much more money. If Mayo is looking to join a championship-caliber team, the Nuggets should be a contender to sign him.
Chris Copeland graduated from the University of Colorado in 2006 before entering the NBA D-League and then playing five seasons in Europe. Last year, the 29-year-old rookie turned heads after making the New York Knicks' roster. During his tenure in NY, he played in 56 games averaging 15.4 minutes, 8.7 points, and 42% shooting from three. While the Denver Nuggets are loaded at the forward positions with Kenneth Faried, Darrell Arthur, Danilo Gallinari and Wilson Chandler, they could still use another shooter. The Los Angeles Lakers, Indiana Pacers, Utah Jazz, and Dallas Mavericks have already contacted him.Jordan Morey is a Denver Nuggets writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @Jordanamorey, "Like" him on Facebook, or add him to your network on Google.
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