NBA Free Agent Signings: Billups, Richardson, Carter, West, Odom

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Our resident NBA nerd David Kay is on vacation this week; in a much warmer place. However, being out of the country hasn’t stopped him from being on top of the news. He’s got a lot to say on what’s been going on with the league this week.

Los Angeles Clippers claim PG Chauncey Billups

Billups was a casualty of the NBA’s amnesty rule as this move needed to be made in order for the Knicks to clear enough cap space to acquire Tyson Chandler.  The Clips then claimed Billups and will only have to pay him two-million dollars which is quite a steal.  I’m not sure how Billups will fit into the point guard rotation with Mo Williams and Eric Bledsoe with Eric Gordon eating up a ton of minutes at the two.  Too much depth can cause problems at times so don’t be surprised to see the Clips try and deal Williams who is in the final year of his contract.

Los Angeles Clippers sign C DeAndre Jordan to 4-year, $43 million contract

The Clips quickly matched the offer sheet Jordan signed with the Warriors as he is their center of the future with Chris Kaman entering the final year of his contract.  Jordan is only 23 years old and coming off a breakout season of sorts as he emerged as the team’s top big man due to Kaman’s injury.  $43 million is more than I expected him to receive, however the Clippers had the cap space to spend and now ensure a talented, developing frontcourt with him and Blake Griffin.

Indiana Pacers sign PF David West to 2-year, $20 million contract

Even since the end of last season, this seemed like the most probably destination for West since Indiana needed a scoring post player and the cap space to acquire his services.  West is coming off a season-ending ACL injury and actually benefited from the lockout since it allowed him more time to rehab meaning he will be ready for the start of the season.  I’m surprised he only accepted a two-year deal but suddenly the Pacers become a sleeper team in the Eastern Conference.

Dallas Mavericks acquire F Lamar Odom and 2nd round pick from Lakers for 1st round pick and $8.9 million trade exception

Odom was angry that his name was floated around in the Chris Paul trade, wanted out of town, and got his wish.  What I don’t get AT ALL is why the Lakers would trade a key piece of their franchise to the defending NBA Champions for next to nothing; unless of course they turn that trade exception into a valuable piece in the next couple of weeks.  Odom is a huge addition for Dallas who has lost Tyson Chandler, Caron Butler, and J.J. Barea in the past couple of days.  He gives the Mavs a ton of flexibility and versatility in their frontcourt along with Dirk Nowitzki and Shawn Marion.

Dallas Mavericks sign SG Vince Carter to 3-year contract

Carter helps the Mavs makeover and should compete with Rudy Fernandez for the starting shooting guard spot.  He is scheduled to make around three-million dollars a year and it will interesting to see how he accepts his role as being a complimentary player.  Carter isn’t near the athlete and scorer that he once was but definitely provides the Mavs with needed depth on the wing.

Orlando Magic re-sign SG Jason Richardson to 4-year, $25 million contract

The Magic keep their starting shooting guard and do so at a reasonable rate.  They really did not have much of a choice since they are so massively over the cap and would have found it difficult to replace a player of his ability.  Richardson’s return will also be used as a bargaining chip as they try to re-sign Dwight Howard before the end of the season; though not a very loaded bargaining chip.

New York Knicks sign PG Mike Bibby and F Jared Jefferies to one-year deals worth league minimum

Bibby will provide the Knicks with a veteran point guard after releasing Billups.  The former Arizona Wildcat is running on empty with his NBA career and will likely see spot duty behind Toney Douglas.  Jefferies made his biggest impact with the Knicks last year in the post-season and will see minutes off the bench behind one of the best frontcourts in the NBA.

Milwaukee Bucks re-sign F Luc Richard Mbah a Moutre to 4-year, $19 million contract

The Bucks decided to match the offer sheet their restricted free agent received from Denver.  Mbah a Moute has been a nice role player for Milwaukee since being a second round pick, but I am not sure he worth nearly five-million a year.  His lack of a true position (too small to be a true power forward, not a talent enough perimeter player to be a true small forward) often plays against him but he does bring solid energy to the floor.

Golden State Warriors sign C Kwame Brown to one-year, $7 million contract

My reaction to this signing: GASP!  Seven million dollars for Kwame Brown?  Really?  After striking out on their offer sheet for DeAndre Jordan, the Warriors settled for Brown who provides some size and depth inside.  He will likely play behind David Lee, Andris Biedrins, and Ekpe Udoh but does finally give Golden State a true big body.

More NBA free agent signings

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David Kay is a senior feature NBA Draft, NBA, and college basketball writer for the Sports Bank.  He also heads up the NBA and college basketball material at Walter and is a former contributor at The Washington Times Communities.  David has appeared on numerous national radio programs spanning from Cleveland to New Orleans to Honolulu.  He also had the most accurate 2011 NBA Mock Draft on the web.

You can follow him on Twitter at DavidKay_TSB.

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