By Joseph Crevier @JosephMCrevier on July 25, 2014
A valuable veteran still remaining on the free agency market is none other than Rashard Lewis. This is a player who went from a six year, 8 million contract to a near veteran's minimum contract with the Miami Heat after age got the best of him. However, in this year's playoffs, Lewis displayed his withstanding ability to knock down the long ball and be a capable role player off the bench. Therefore, Lewis is sure to find a job very soon.
On the surface, Lewis does not fit in with the young, run-and-gun Phoenix Suns. Yet, Channing Frye who's style of play is very similar to Lewis', has played a vital role in Phoenix for years, especially last season. Unfortunately for the Suns though, the Orlando Magic decided to vastly overpay for Frye leaving a vacancy that can potentially be filled by Lewis. Being a veteran swingman, adding Lewis would bring leadership and a solid outside shot.
Things are looking bleak in Houston after quite possibly one of the most unsuccessful offseasons off all-time. As the Houston Rockets appeared to be the frontrunner to land Chris Bosh, GM Daryl Morey had to unload essential role players Jeremy Lin, Omer Asik and Chandler Parsons. But as Bosh chose the Miami Heat, Houston was left with a serious depth issue. Bringing in Lewis as a cheap veteran to stretch the floor may be Morey's last resort.
Much like Houston, the Oklahoma City Thunder have struggled mightily when star players Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and Serge Ibaka are on the floor. The team's bench is extremely young with plenty of room for further development leaving Lewis as a logical, short-term addition to the roster. Caron Butler served this role for the second half of last season, but the two sides have parted ways making the door wide open for Lewis' arrival.
Of course Miami, where Lewis has spent his recent years, is still a reasonable destination even subsequent to LeBron James' departure. Additional playing time will be available for Lewis in Miami and the lure of the beautiful South Beach is always going to be present.
At last, the Indiana Pacers are by far the best landing spot to obtain the services of Rashard Lewis. Bench production doomed Indiana for the majority of the 2013-14 season when Luis Scola seriously underachieved on both sides of the floor. In no way is Lewis going to be the tipping factor to lead the Pacers to an NBA Championship, but he can certainly swing a few games as he did against Indiana in last year's playoffs.
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