But if you’re Mark Cuban, and Chris Paul let it be known that he wanted to come play for you and with Dirk Nowitzki, do you make a run at him? Or would you go out and try to use the available cap space on, say, Al Jefferson and Brandon Jennings?
We don’t know what we would do either. What we do know is that once the trading deadline passes, most NBA teams (and fans) immediately set their sights on June’s draft and the beginning of the free agency period.
For years, NBA front offices have been ranking free-agents-to-be, even putting dollar and year amounts on what they believe competitive offers would look like based on the market and the player’s demand. Fortunately, from here through somewhere around August 1, we will be doing the same, minus the dollars and years.
What’s important is that we take team success into account, and what transpired over the previous week will be reflected in our rankings. Also important is that our list only includes players who will be restricted or unrestricted free agents. In other words, players subjected to a team option or holding a player option will not be included until the option is exercised.
On to the rankings.