As the days go by, we see more players doubtful about going to Orlando to resume season at Walt Disney World. We already saw Davis Bertans and Avery Bradley opting out of the league's resumption and more players could make the same decision shortly. In that case, teams will have to look at free agency and decide which player is the one they need.
Sam Quinn of CBS Sports listed the best free agents for the 22 NBA teams that will attend the bubble location in Orlando next month. These players have the biggest chances to make a return to the league if more players decided to sit out the resume season.
Quinn started with DeMarcus Cousins, a player who's been followed by several teams even before the league announced its plan to return next July 31. Boogie was part of the Los Angeles Lakers before the start of the season; an injury prevented him from playing a single game with the Purple and Gold, but he could be making his return to the hardwoods in Orlando.
The Lakers could see Dwight Howard and JaVale McGee sitting out this season and Boogie is a very good option for them. The Miami Heat have also shown interest in Boogie among other teams, so it will be interesting to see where he finally ends up playing.
CBS also listed shooters and scorers like Joe Johnson as well as shooters, like Ryan Anderson, Allen Crabbe, Anthony Tolliver, Ryan Broekhoff and Gerald Green. Johnson actually signed a contract with the Detroit Pistons before the start of this season, but the team changed its mine and part ways with the swingman one day before the start of the season.
Johnson hasn't played a single NBA game since 2018 and his condition is a mystery for everybody, especially considering he's 38 at this time.
Speaking of shooters, it doesn't look like anybody is getting the advantage over the rest of candidates. Allen Crabbe only shot 30.3% from deep while Anderson has made only 22.2 percent across the past two seasons. If any team wants to sign them, they'll have to look for different reasons to sign any of these dudes.
If we talk about point guards, they named Isaiah Thomas, Tyler Johnson and Trey Burke. The most famous name of those is Thomas, whose last experience in the league was with the Washington Wizards. Even though he was waived, Thomas showed good things in D.C. For Burke and Johnson, they're complete opposites. Burke can score, no doubt about it, but his defense is a big weakness. On the other side, Johnson is a different thing; his offensive game is not the best of all but he can defend at a pretty good level.
Jamal Crawford, JR Smith and Lance Stephenson are considered 'wildcards', and it's not clear if they will be eligible to sign with a team. All these players have been linked with a return to the league, but nothing has happened yet. Smith is reportedly the frontrunner to sign with the Los Angeles Lakers after Avery Bradley opted out of going to Orlando.
As for Crawford and Stephenson, the future is unclear for them. Still, the league might have a roster spot for them depending on how things develop from here until July 1.
Iman Shumpert and Jordan Bell are seeing as the best defenders teams could sign before the restart of the season, but their offensive struggles are a problem for both of them.
Lastly, we find veterans. Pau Gasol and Nene Hilario's names are mentioned on that list, but nobody knows the condition of these two. Pau has stated he'd like to join the Los Angeles Lakers to finish his career but it's unlikely to see that happening this season. Gasol is recovering from a stress fracture in his foot.
Nene didn't play a single with the Houston Rockets due to a hip injury. It's not like these men will lead a team to win a championship, but they could help a young squad, especially if that team has playoff aspirations.
Out of these guys, it looks like Boogie and Smith have the biggest chance to suit up in Orlando next month. The rest will have to wait and see what happens with the rest of NBA teams and see if there is an open spot for them.