It’s not easy to stay put with a team that doesn’t offer much upside besides the money if you’re keen to compete for an NBA Championship, while others could offer cash but wouldn’t give you the chance to actually compete.
Depending on every player’s aspirations, entering free agency is always a key moment in their careers, as they can decide whether they want to keep with their current teams or pursue something else for their career.
With the 2019 free agent class being one of the most stacked of the last couple of years, let’s take a look at 6 stars that might as well be playing the last season of their careers with their current teams, at least for the time being.
6. Eric Bledsoe
Eric Bledsoe has struggled to establish himself as a top-tier point guard due to health and attitude issues over the course of his career, but he’s still going to be heavily pursuit come 2019 summer.
Bledsoe’s tenure at Milwaukee wasn’t as good as expected and he was even vastly exposed by backup playmaker Terry Rozier in the playoffs, so we wouldn’t be surprised if he winds up leaving the team.
5. D'Angelo Russell
D’Angelo Russell hasn’t been able to kick-start his career to the point everybody expected him to do, but the upside is still there and barring injury, he’s bound to have a monster season with the Brooklyn Nets.
If he manages to put together a nice season, he may be getting a lot of cash next year and considering he’s an unrestricted free agent, Nets may not be able to match an offer from an overpaying team.
4. Dwight Howard
The Washington Wizards pulled off a nice low-risk/high reward pick up by getting Dwight Howard on board for this year, being a major improvement in the center position over Marcin Gortat.
Wall wanted athletic bigs and Superman is as athletic as they come, but even though, the team is not going to be able to offer Howard a deal beyond this season unless he takes a massive pay cut.
3. DeMarcus Cousins
DeMarcus Cousins pretty much broke the NBA after settling for just 5.3 million dollars in order to piggyback ride to the NBA Championship by joining the Golden State Warriors, one of the softest moves of present years.
Even though, he’s not going to be able to stay there beyond this year unless he’s willing to sacrifice most of his money once again, as the Dubs are going to have to spend a lot of cash in order to keep Durant and Thompson on board.
2. Jimmy Butler
Over the course of the past weeks, it has been leaked that Jimmy Butler may not be slightly pleased with his young teammates' attitude, and that would like to join forces with Kyrie Irving to rule the Eastern Conference.
Butler is a top-tier two-way player and has already declined a max contract extension from the Minnesota Timberwolves, so it’s been pretty clear that he’d rather give up money in order to leave town.
1. Kawhi Leonard
Kawhi Leonard is set to be arguably the most desired free agent target if he actually stays with the San Antonio Spurs throughout this entire campaign, even though he’s already stated his desire to play in Los Angeles next year.
Whether is the Clippers or the Lakers, or even the Philadelphia 76ers; what’s a lock to happen is that we’re not going to see Leonard dressed again in a Spurs uniform after all the controversy that has surrounded both parties.