By Court Zierk @courtzierk on July 1, 2014
With the draft in the rearview mirror, and free agency set to begin at 12:01am ET, things are beginning to come into focus for several of the big name free agents on the market. Lance Stephenson may not have the appeal of LeBron James or Carmelo Anthony, but he is certainly talented enough to be a highly sought after piece to many teams' championship puzzles. Here are his most likely landing spots.
You could make a strong argument that the Hawks need Lance Stephenson more than any other team on the list. Kyle Korver is a good role player, but should not be a starter in this league anymore. The Hawks are nearly million under the cap after dumping Lou Williams and are looking to make a splash. They are also looking at Luol Deng, but look for them to also make a strong play for Stephenson.
If the Bulls amnesty Carlos Boozer, they will free up about million to use in free agency. Obviously their first priority is Carmelo Anthony, and they are expected to put on the full court press starting early on July 1st to entice him. But if it doesn’t work out, look for the Bulls to make a play at Stephenson, who obviously isn’t the potential offensive threat like Anthony, but could still carve out a starring role on this team.
The Cavs have about million of cap space, and are looking to make some noise in free agency. Landing Andrew Wiggins in the draft provides them with an additional scoring threat since Deng will most likely end up with a different team. I don’t necessarily think Stephenson makes much sense with this lineup, but I frankly don’t put anything past the Cavs.
Charlotte would be a great fit for Stephenson. And with million to spend, Charlotte will certainly make a strong play for Stephenson in addition to some of the other big name free agents. Bringing in PJ Hairston helps them fill their glaring need for wing scoring, but Stephenson could potentially help take the Hornets to the top tier of the Eastern Conference.
I think it is highly likely that Stephenson re-signs with the Pacers. Larry Bird and company are rumored to be pulling out all the stops to lure him back to Indianapolis. With Evan Turner’s qualifying offer being declined, the writing appears to be on the wall. The Pacers need Stephenson as bad as he needs to be needed.
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