By: Florian Gheorghe
The NBA has just got a lot more interesting after a very busy start of the 2015 Free Agency. Almost every franchise is currently trying to steal Golden State Warriors’ winning blueprint by adding three-point shooting, versatility and depth. But who are the big the winners so far and who is threatening the Warriors’ reign and rings?
Let’s take a closer look at the top three teams that can call themselves contenders after making a splash in the NBA Free Agency:
1. San Antonio Spurs
The Spurs are officiallythe scariest team in the league. And this is not because they convinced Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili to play yet another year on a major discount. Nor because they re-signed marksman Danny Green on a four-year deal worth some 40+ million dollars and the Red Rocket Matt Bonner on a one-year deal for the veteran minimum. In fact, two major roster additions did the trick: LaMarcus Aldridge and David West. Aldridge left Portland and chose San Antonio as his best shot at an NBA championship. He signed a four-year, $80 million contract but that’s not all: he will have the unique opportunity to learn how to win from the classiest organization in the league and he will become the new face of the franchise alongside Kawhi Leonard when Tim Duncan retires. And yeah, he will also be coached by future Hall of Famer Gregg Popovich. Isn’t that enough? Add David West – who by the way turned down some $11 million to join the cause – into the mix and you end up with a hell of basketball team.
2. Los Angeles Clippers
Just ten days ago, the Clippers were licking their wounds. J.J. Reddick was asking the reporters if F minus is a good rating for his team’s free agency. Moreover, L.A. was seriously thinking of trading Jamal Crawford to the Cavs and be done with all these championship aspirations. But something changed or better said, somebody changed his mind. DeAndre Jordan dismissed the verbal agreement with the Mavs and re-signed with the Clips. The Twitter Nation went crazy and just like that, the Los Angeles Clippers were once again part of the never-ending conversation that usually starts with the question: Will it be their year? It might very well be if we count the Clippers’ other signings: Lance Stephenson and veteran Paul Pierce.
3. Miami Heat
Beware Cleveland Cavaliers and Chicago Bulls! A new force is on the rise in the shallow East. The name? The Miami Heat of course. The franchise handled the free agency very well although they didn’t sign any superstar. Or did they? Yes, the Heat re-signed Dwyane Wade to a one-year, $20 million contract and brought him help also to be able to compete with his best friend LeBron James. They re-signed the Dragon Goran Dragic, Luol Deng opted in and convinced Gerald Green and Amare Stoudemire to take their talents to South Beach. Andif Chris Bosh comes back healthy, Hassan Whiteside remains a beast in the paint and rookie Justice Winslow leaves up to his potential,then the Miami Heat will have every chance of going deep into the playoffs and upset some contender. Can you imagine a Heat – Cavs matchup in the Eastern Conference Finals?