NBA Free Agency sparks debates before, during, and after the deadline. Free agency gossip is like an Amoeba for changing and adapting daily. The 2022 NBA Free Agency has now come and gone. So who are the Top 30 NBA Free Agents in 2022? Let the debates begin.
John Wall – Los Angeles Clippers
John Wall only played 40 games in 3 seasons with the Houston Rockets. Wall sat out this last season wanting to be traded to a championship contender.
On the first day of Free Agency (July 1st), Wall signed a two-year, $13.2 million deal with the Los Angeles Clippers.
Zach LaVine – Chicago Bulls
The Chicago Bulls wanted Zach LaVine to stay, and so did LaVine. The 27-year-old, back-to-back NBA All-Star helped guide Chicago to the playoffs for the first time since 2017.
LaVine was seeking a max contract and re-signed with Chicago on July 1st for $215.2 million over five years.
Bradley Beal – Washington Wizards
Bradley Beal’s pending free-agency has been an issue for the last few seasons. Will Beal stay with the Washington Wizards, or go to a contender? That question loomed for years.
Beal and the Wizards finally ended years of that speculation by agreeing to five-year deal worth $251 million.
James Harden – Philadelphia 76ers
James Harden just landed on the Philadelphia 76ers during the 2021 season. Harden requested a trade from the Brooklyn Nets after just 1.5 seasons there.
Surprisingly, Harden signed a two-year, $32 million extension with Philadelphia, $15 million less than what he wanted, so that the team could afford more players.
Deandre Ayton – Phoenix Suns
Deandre Ayton is still on the Phoenix Suns, despite wanting out and being openly shopped around. Ayton produced impressive regular season statistics, averaging 17 points and 10 rebounds per game, but those stats decreased in the playoffs.
Since July 1st, the Suns have unsuccessfully entertained many offers for Ayton.
Jalen Brunson – New York Knicks
The Dallas Mavericks wanted and needed Jalen Brunson to remain with the team. Mavs’ fans and the team were shocked alike when Brunson requested a trade from Dallas.
On July 1st, Brunson bucked the Mavericks for NYC and signed a four-year ($104 million) deal with the New York Knicks.
Anfernee Simons – Portland Trail Blazers
Anfernee Simons of the Portland Trail Blazers waiting anxiously for his chance to play. C.J. McCollum’s trade to New Orleans gave Simons his opportunity.
Simons’ 17 points, 2.6 rebounds, and 3.9 assists per game in 2021 led to his re-signing with Portland for four years and $100 million.
Collin Sexton – Cleveland Cavaliers
Arguably the best available free agent, the Cleveland Cavaliers’ Collin Sexton’s future depends on others. Sexton is a restricted free agent, meaning the team decides where he goes.
Sexton’s injury woes left him sidelined, watching Darius Garland emerge in his absence and damaged any chances of earning a big deal.
Mitchell Robinson – New York Knicks
“Bing Bong”, a sound made usually by New York Knicks fans, is now the sound of Mitchell Robinson’s bank account growing.
Robinson re-signed with New York, for four years, at $60 million. While Robinson’s rookie stats did not move mountains, the Knicks see great promise in their young center.
Bobby Portis Jr. – Milwaukee Bucks
Bobby Portis Jr.’s sacrifice last season by taking less money so the Milwaukee Bucks could make significant moves, and his stellar play coming off the bench, helped the Bucks win the 2021 NBA Finals.
July 1st, 2022, Portis’ sacrificial gesture was rewarded after Milwaukee signed him for four years at $49 million.
Kyle Anderson – Minnesota Timberwolves
Kyle “Slow-Mo” Anderson, nicknamed for his deliberate and unorthodox style of play, was a valued contributor to the Memphis Grizzlies in the 2021 playoffs and regular season.
Instead of returning to Memphis, Anderson decided to take his free-agent talents to the Minnesota Timberwolves for a two-year, $18 million dollar deal.
Jusuf Nurkic – Portland Trail Blazers
Jusuf Nurkic, deficiencies shooting and on defense aside, quietly has been a solid player for the Portland Trail Blazers.
What Nurkic lacked created enough doubt for the other teams to shy away from their pursuit of him. Nurkic opted instead to re-sign with Portland for four years, and $70 million.
Tyus Jones – Memphis Grizzlies
Nobody had a quieter signing on July 1st, 2022, the first day of free-agency, than Memphis Grizzlies guard Tyus Jones.
Jones silently dropped decent regular season stats, which increased across the board in the Grizzlies’ 2022 playoff run. Jones resigned with Memphis for 2 years and $30 million.
Gary Payton II – Portland Trail Blazers
Gary Payton II attracted suitors defending for the Golden State Warriors, though typically, teams look for offensive skills first.
Payton II, son of NBA legend Gary Payton (The Glove), showed the apple did not fall from the tree defensively, earning a three-year, $28 million deal with the Portland Trail Blazers.
Mo Bamba – Orlando Magic
Besides having a cool basketball name, Orlando Magic center Mo Bamba is a promising young talent on the rise. Unfortunately Bamba’s seasons in Orlando marred by injuries, lowered his stock in deal negotiations.
Generating less than ideal interest from other teams, Bamba re-signed with Orlando for 2 years, $21 million.
PJ Tucker – Philadelphia 76ers
PJ Tucker’s reputation as a three-point shooter and defensive stopper made him a hot commodity in the past. Tucker won a title with the Milwaukee Bucks in 2021 before leading the Miami Heat this last season and playoffs.
Tucker signed with the Philadelphia 76ers for three years, $33.2 million.
Victor Oladipo – Miami Heat
A common theme on the list of talented free agents has been injuries. Victor Oladipo’s constant injuries exemplify that pattern perfectly.
Oladipo’s hopes for a big contract were dashed, only playing a combined 12 games in 2 seasons with the Miami Heat. Miami re-signed Oladipo for one year at $11 million.
Luguentz Dort – Oklahoma City Thunder
Quebec native Luguentz Dort stepped into the spotlight after displaying lockdown defense. and his increased offensive output in each of his three seasons in Oklahoma City.
As an OKC Thunder rookie, Dort shut down then Houston Rockets guard James Harden in 2019. OKC re-signed Dort for five years for $87.5 million.
Malik Monk – Los Angeles Lakers
After his first four seasons with the Charlotte Hornets, Malik Monk showed out in his first year with the Los Angeles Lakers. Monk played the most minutes and games of his career as a member of the Lakers.
For his efforts, the Lakers resigned Monk for two years for $19 million.
Ricky Rubio – Cleveland Cavaliers
Ricky Rubio gave his all to Cleveland at the start of the 2021 season but ended up tearing his left ACL. The Cavaliers decided to trade him away to Indiana before deciding that they wanted him back!
Rubio is now returning to the Cavaliers after signing a three-year contract worth $18.4 million. Hopefully, he can complete the season healthy.
Gary Harris – Orlando Magic
Once a dynamic young player for the Denver Nuggets and thought to be a key part of the team’s future championship aspirations, Gary Harris and his injuries were traded to Orlando.
Harris re-signed for two years and $26 million with Orlando after his longest season since 2019 with Denver.
Nicolas Batum – Los Angeles Clippers
Ever the consummate professional, France native Nicolas Batum has always shown up to work, hitting 3’s and shutting down the opponent’s best perimeter player.
Batum has been the rock behind the defense of the Los Angeles Clippers for 2.5 seasons and re-signed with them for two years for $22 million.
Nicolas Claxton – Brooklyn Nets
Even though offenses are not run for him, his explosive leaping ability and rebounding made the Brooklyn Nets’ Nicolas Claxton attractive to many NBA teams.
Claxton’s energetic play landed him a two-year $20 million dollar deal, re-signing with the Nets, despite only playing 94 games in three seasons in Brooklyn.
Isaiah Hartenstein – New York Knicks
Isaiah Hartenstein has never wowed audiences with sizzle or flash to his game. Hartenstein’s journey started while playing professionally in Germany, developing a reputation for being hard-nosed and fundamentally sound.
The 7-foot German-American left the Los Angeles Clippers and signed for two years and $16 million with the New York Knicks.
Kevon Looney – Golden State Warriors
Rarely in the history of NBA free agency does a 3x NBA champion become available. Such is the case for Kevon Looney of the Golden State Warriors, the only team he has ever known in his seven-year career.
Looney re-signed with the Warriors for three years for $25.5 million.
Otto Porter Jr. – Golden State Warriors
Before injuries hampered Otto Porter Jr. over the last few seasons, he was a threat from beyond the 3-point line and a defensive stopper.
The Toronto Raptors signed Porter Jr. after he won the 2022 NBA championship with the Golden State Warriors, inking him to a two-year, $12.4 million contract.
Montrezl Harrell – Charlotte Hornets
Look up ‘energy’ in the dictionary and all you will see Montrezl Harrell’s photo. The 6′ 7″ center, plays the role of a seven-footer, with his explosive blocked shots and rebounding prowess.
Currently Harrell is still with the Charlotte Hornets unsigned, while the Hornets take offers for him.
Donte DiVincenzo – Golden State Warriors
Injuries limited Donte DiVincenzo, who played more than 30 games only twice (66 games in 2019 and 2020) since his 2018 rookie debut.
DiVincenzo won a title in 2021 with the Milwaukee Bucks but never played in the Finals. The Golden State Warriors signed DiVincenzo for two years and $9.3 million.
TJ Warren – Brooklyn Nets
Forget Waldo. Where is TJ Warren? The former Indiana Pacers star shined brightest in the 2020 NBA Bubble, where he dropped his career-high with 53 points.
Warren’s injury history was too much for most teams, except for the Brooklyn Nets, who signed him for one year and $2.6 million.
Chris Boucher – Toronto Raptors
Bonjour! Montreal-native Chris Boucher came from extremely humble beginnings working as a dishwasher in a Quebec restaurant, desperately trying to make any NBA roster.
Boucher has re-signed with the Toronto Raptors twice, first in 2020, for two years at $13.5 million. Then again, July 1st, 2022, for three years and $35.3 million.