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Every NBA Team's Biggest Flight Risk This Offseason

Denver NuggetsDenver's
Sacramento KingsAssuming Harrison Barnes
Detroit Pistons
Houston Rockets
Dewayne Dedmon
the Atlanta Hawks
The Athletic's
the Boston Celtics'
the Brooklyn Nets
Rondae Hollis-Jefferson
the Charlotte Hornets
Chicago Bulls
the Cleveland Cavaliers
Nwaba's Bird
million).The Cavaliers'
Kristaps Porzingis
the Dallas Mavericks
Shams Charania
Golden State's
Yahoo Sports'
the Indiana Pacers'
Karl-Anthony Towns
the Los Angeles Clippers'
New York Times'
the Los Angeles Lakers
The Memphis Grizzlies
Fox Sports Sun's
the South Florida Sun Sentinel's
Kelly Olynyk
Dion Waiters'
the Milwaukee Bucks
The Minnesota Timberwolves
Tyus Jones
Orlando Magic
Phoenix Suns
Utah Jazz
the New Orleans Pelicans
Jrue Holiday
Eastern Conference
The Toronto Raptors
the Washington Wizards
NBC Sports
Chase Hughes
NBA Twitter's
the Bryant-Portis-Satoransky
Basketball Reference
Basketball Insiders
SLC Dunk's

Tree Hill's
Peyton Sawyer
Paul Millsap
Malik Beasley
Jamal Murray
Willie Cauley-Stein
Marvin Bagley III
Harry Giles
Nemanja Bjelica
Dante Cunningham
Rudy Gay
Pau Gasol
Ricky Rubio
Thabo Sefolosha
Ekpe Udoh
Rudy Gobert
Wayne EllingtonHere's
Wayne Ellington's
Ish Smith's
Kenneth Faried
Austin RiversThe
Iman Shumpert
Gerald Green
Markieff MorrisMarkieff Morris
Nerlens Noel
John Collins
Anthony Davis
Giannis Antetokounmpo
Travis Schlenk
Sam Amick
Perry Goeshere
Kyrie Irving
D'Angelo Russell
Marcus Morris
Bojan Bogdanovic
Stephen Curry
Tobias Harris
LeBron James
Klay Thompson
Danny Ainge
Jaylen Brown
Jayson Tatum
Al Horford
Terry Rozier
Ed Davis
Jarrett Allen
Allen Crabbe
Spencer Dinwiddie's
Kemba Walker
Jeremy Lamb
Bismack Biyombo
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist
Marvin Williams
Waiving Tony Parker's
Paying Lamb
Ryan Arcidiacono
Kris Dunn
Zach LaVine
Lauri Markkanen
Otto Porter Jr.
Denzel Valentine
Wendell Carter Jr.
David Nwaba
James Harden
Jeff Green
Jimmy Butler
Kevin Knox
Bradley Beal
Thaddeus Young
Mike Muscala
Blake Griffin
Miles Bridges
Glenn Robinson III
Rondae Hollis-Jefferson
Gilbert Arenas
JR Smith's
Tim Hardaway Jr.
Courtney Lee
Dennis Smith Jr.
Dorian Finney-Smith
Maxi Kleber
DeMarcus Cousins
Kevin Durant
Chris Haynes
Malcolm Brogdon
Danilo Gallinari
Kevin Pritchard
Myles Turner
Victor Oladipo
Darren Collison
Cory Joseph
Patrick Beverley
Kawhi Leonard
Marc Stein
Stephen A. Smith
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander
Jerome Robinson
Landry Shamet
Tyrone Wallace
Lou Williams
Reggie Bullock
LeBron James-era
Isaac Bonga
Moritz Wagner
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope
18.Delon Wright
Marc Gasol
C.J. Miles
Jonas Valanciunas
Avery Bradley
Keeping Wright's
Rodney McGruder's
Erik Spoelstra
Goran Dragic
Hassan Whiteside
Ryan Anderson's
Pat Riley
Jason Jackson
Ira Winderman
James Johnson
Eric Bledsoe
Matthew Dellavedova
John Henson
Khris Middleton
Brook Lopez
Nikola Mirotic
Ryan Saunders
Tom Thibodeau
Derrick Rose
Julius Randle
Stanley Johnson
Noah Vonleh
Luke Kornet
Emmanuel Mudiay
Mario Hezonja
Dewayne Dedmon
Karl-Anthony Towns
Nikola Vucevic
Andrew Bailey
Terrence Ross'
Joel Embiid
Ben Simmons
Josh Harris
Jackie MacMullan
Brett Brown
Ramona Shelburne
Adrian Wojnarowski
Richaun Holmes
Kelly Oubre Jr.
Josh Jackson
Devin Booker's
TJ Warren
Al-Farouq Aminu
Jake Layman
Seth Curry
Davis Bertans
Joe Harris
Damian Lillard
CJ McCollum
Kawhi Leonard's
Alex Kennedy:"We
Danny Green
Jeremy Lin
Kyle Lowry
John Wall's
Trevor Ariza
Thomas Bryant
Tomas Satoransky
Jabari Parker
Bobby Portis
Dwight Howard
Ben Standig


Early Bird
the Western Conference

the Golden State Warriors
the Portland Trail Blazers

San Antonio
San Antonio's
Austin Rivers
Oklahoma City
Los Angeles
South Florida
New Orleans

the NBA Finals

Positivity     37.00%   
   Negativity   63.00%
The New York Times
Write a review: Bleacher Report

Sacramento KingsAssuming Harrison Barnes picks up his $23.6 million player option, Willie Cauley-Stein (restricted) is the Kings' lone free agent of consequence, and he's completely replaceable.Opponents are shooting 67 percent against him at the rim, and Sacramento's big-picture offense will fare better leaning on the more expansive arsenals of Marvin Bagley III, Harry Giles and Nemanja Bjelica. Detroit Pistons: Wayne EllingtonHere's the good news: Wayne Ellington's three-point shooting has perked up after a slow start in Detroit, and the starting five that includes him is outpacing opponents by almost 18 points per 100 possessions.Here's the bad news: The Pistons don't owns his Bird rights and won't have cap space this summer. They'll need to use their mid-level exception to retain him if this relationship pans out.Here's the probably-pretty-OK-news: If the Pistons play their cards right, they'll have access to the full MLE ($9.2 million) while carrying Ish Smith's free-agent hold. Early Bird rights will be enough to match any long-term offers Dedmon might field, and the team has plenty of cap space to burn.With general manager Travis Schlenk eyeing marquee free-agent meetings, according to The Athletic's Sam Amick, the Hawks might even aggressively pursue Dedmon's return. But his market is going to be finite since not every team will have access to max cap space. Keeping him becomes crucial if team president Danny Ainge ships out Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum in an Anthony Davis package.But the Celtics will be well into luxury-tax territory next year if they bring back Irving and Al Horford (player option). It won't take much for Morris to become collateral damage of a salary-cap outlook that has to maneuver around imminent paydays for some combination of Brown (extension-eligible), Tatum (extension-eligible in 2020), maybe Davis (2020-21 player option) and potentially Terry Rozier (restricted).Non-Bird free agents are always difficult to keep. Reserve bigs who don't space the floor are rarely in line for overpays, and Brooklyn has the cap flexibility to bring him back if his market dictates more than the 20 percent raise non-Bird rights allow.At the same time, re-investing in a backup big doesn't profile as the Nets' top priority. (See: Spencer Dinwiddie's extension.) They might be more focused on keeping the skeleton of a postseason squad intact.If anything, Davis is the player most likely to fall through the cracks unless Russell's market gets inflated by an overenthusiastic admirer—a fork-in-the-road dilemma Brooklyn likely won't have to worry about given the limited number of teams with both max space and the drive to spend it on a point guard.Kemba Walker is set to hit unrestricted free agency for the first time in his career, and the Charlotte Hornets have not given him many reasons to stay. Charlotte can offer him up to five years and $189.7 million (or $221.3 million if he makes an All-NBA team), while other teams top out at four years and $140.6 million. He's logged time at four positions, and the Cleveland Cavaliers habitually line him up against big guards and wings.Check out the 13 players—there was a four-way tie for 10th—Nwaba has spent the most time defending by total number of possessions: James Harden, Bojan Bogdanovic, Jeff Green, LeBron James, Jimmy Butler, Kevin Knox, Bradley Beal, Thaddeus Young, Mike Muscala, Blake Griffin, Miles Bridges, Glenn Robinson III and Rondae Hollis-Jefferson.Rival offenses are averaging 1.01 points per possession when Nwaba guards one of these players, and this 13-man gaggle is shooting a combined 37.9 percent against him. Nwaba probably won't cost more than the taxpayer mid-level exception ($5.7 million), let alone the non-taxpayer MLE ($9.3 million).The Cavaliers' cap sheet is the real kicker. They don't own his Bird rights, so something will have gone terribly wrong if he returns for the $6.4 million they can offer him for next season.While Cousins gives the Warriors another hub during stretches in which they're light on megastars, his defensive fit isn't clean. His cap hold ($13.7 million) is manageable enough for them to float and still muster max-contract space, and team president Kevin Pritchard is acutely aware of Indiana's market limitations. The Memphis Grizzlies acquired him as the centerpiece of their Marc Gasol trade, they can match any offer he receives, and they don't have the cap-sheet malleability to land a suitable replacement.Assuming C.J. Miles and Jonas Valanciunas pick up their player options, the Grizzlies need to waive Avery Bradley ($2 million partial guarantee) to ensure they remain under the tax. He won't be one of this summer's most popular names, but teams will roll the dice on a guy who plays bullish defense against bigger players, hits standstill threes and has shown traces of pick-and-roll initiation.Locking up Eric Bledsoe on a cap-friendly extension and dumping the contracts of Matthew Dellavedova and John Henson have put the Milwaukee Bucks on track to pay Malcolm Brogdon (restricted) and Khris Middleton (player option) without cannonballing into the tax. The Bucks won't have cap space if they keep holds for Brogdon and Middleton, so they'll need a portion of the mid-level exception to get them by.It most definitely should if they have the non-taxpayer's version. If Middleton costs the max (he might) and Brogdon's next deal runs more than $15 million per year (it may), the Bucks won't be able to bring back Lopez without entering the tax or shaving off more salary. His outside volume is critical to the Bucks' revamped shot profile, and he's a sturdy presence around the rim.No one else has ever averaged two made threes and two blocks per game for an entire season, and opponents are shooting just over 52 percent against him at the iron—a top-seven mark among 200-plus players who have challenged more than 100 point-blank looks.The Minnesota Timberwolves have a case to join the "Teams Without Notable Flight Risks" section. It makes him already gone.And that invites another pick—the correct pick: Julius Randle.Without controlling his Bird rights, the most New Orleans can offer him before using cap space is a $10.4 million starting salary. But he gives up as many points on defense as he scores, and again, the Pelicans must be conscious of how much he'll cost following a career year.Noah Vonleh is no different from any of the Knicks' other free agents: They will readily make him a casualty of a two-star coup.Remove that dream scenario from the table, and Vonleh's free agency defaults to the team's most delicate matter. Some small-sample cherry-picking is at play, but Vonleh will ride his gap-filling performance to genuine interest.This leaves the Knicks at the mercy of two possible outcomes: Either they sign two stars, in which case they'll need Vonleh to cost no more than the room exception ($4.8 million), or their pie-in-the-sky designs go belly-up, and his return becomes an issue of how much future flexibility they must cede to re-sign him.Average together the rankings in 10 different catch-all metrics this season, and Nikola Vucevic grades out as  a top-10 player, per Andrew Bailey of the Hardwood Knocks podcast. This season, he is a a contract year...on a team not exactly built to maximize the competitive window of 28-year-old stud.So why isn't he Orlando's biggest flight risk? Ticketing him for a starter's role in a different situation doesn't do much to change that.Even as a restricted free agent and even with his three-point clip hovering well below league average, Kelly Oubre Jr. is the bigger flight risk.Combo wings are in greater demand than bigs, and teams are almost always willing to take a flier on 23-year-olds who can cover three to four positions on defense. I think they really have to, if not win the championship, [at least] get to the NBA Finals to kind of cure the concern."Toronto has other flight risks, namely Danny Green and Jeremy Lin (non-Bird), but Leonard's decision is more integral to the future.The Celtics can skirt a full-tilt rebuild if Kyrie Irving flees for another team. The Raptors don't have that luxury.They're looking at a reset if Leonard leaves for Los Angeles or a dark-horse destination, regardless of whether they hang onto Marc Gasol (player option) and Kyle Lowry.Just about every free agent from the Washington Wizards has cause to be treated as a flight risk.Sending Otto Porter Jr. to the Bulls alleviates their luxury-tax concerns, but they aren't making the playoffs, and John Wall's Achilles injury may keep him on the sidelines through next season.In this case, grappling with the protracted absence of a franchise pillar is grounds to start anew. They won't be in much better shape if they run it back with him, Trevor Ariza, Thomas Bryant (restricted), Jeff Green, Tomas Satoransky (restricted), Jabari Parker (team option) and Bobby Portis (restricted), not to mention Dwight Howard (player option). Dipping into their mid-level exception likely arms them with enough money, but it remains to be seen how deep they'll need to go and how many years he'll be after.Proximity to the tax also becomes an issue if the Wizards use non-Bird rights to re-up Ariza and are set on retaining one or more from the Bryant-Portis-Satoransky trio.

As said here by Dan Favale