NBA free agency’s fast start quickly lurched to a near standstill, because the basketball world braces for resolution on the heels of Kevin Durant’s reported trade request from the Brooklyn Nets.
Teams and players could officially start signings on July 6, and we’ve kept track of all of the reported and official free-agency moves, in addition to the offseason trades consummated for the reason that June 23 NBA Draft. It appears now now we have not less than slightly respiratory room with the league turning a few of its attention to 2022 NBA Summer League.
Still, several talented free agents across the NBA find themselves in search of recent contracts.
Here’s a fast take a look at seven of the highest remaining 2022 NBA free agents, listed alphabetically (the list doesn’t include Charlotte’s Miles Bridges, who was reportedly arrested for domestic violence on the eve of free agency):
LaMarcus Aldridge, Brooklyn Nets, unrestricted
2021-22 stats: 12.9 ppg, 5.5 rpg, 0.9 apg
You most likely forgot about Aldridge since the 36-year-old didn’t play a second of Brooklyn’s transient 2022 postseason run. However the man can still go (not as fast as we’ve seen prior to now), and he stays almost automatic within the post and within the mid-range. Aldridge shot 55% from the sphere last season, and he’s still hungry to capture his first title after 17 seasons.
Carmelo Anthony, Los Angeles Lakers, unrestricted
2021-22 stats: 13.3 ppg, 4.2 rpg, 1.0 apg
We hear quite a bit in regards to the need for teams to maintain around veterans to show young players the ropes similarly to the best way Miami uses Udonis Haslem. It’s an added bonus when that vet may help teams win games, which is precisely what we’ve seen from Anthony in his last two stops. During the last three seasons, the 38-year-old has shot 37.5% or higher from 3-point range.
Deandre Ayton, Phoenix Suns, restricted
2021-22 stats: 17.2 ppg, 10.2 rpg, 1.4 apg
Ayton’s immediate future appears to be somewhat complicated and placed on hold by Durant’s reported preference to affix the Suns in a trade. It’s expected the 23-year-old likely will remain unsigned until there’s resolution on the Durant front, and it appears several options involving multiple teams are on the table for the previous No. 1 overall pick, who entered the 2021-22 season seeking to secure a max deal.
James Harden, Philadelphia 76ers, unrestricted
2021-22 stats: 22.0 ppg, 7.7 rpg, 10.3 apg
It’s expected Harden signs a recent deal in Philadelphia for less money than the $47.3 million option for next season that he opted out of. Harden made the move to take less in what’s expected to be a shorter deal to provide himself more flexibility in addition to the team, which is working to enhance a roster that already features 2022 Kia MVP runner-up Joel Embiid.
Montrezl Harrell, Charlotte Hornets, unrestricted
2021-22 stats: 13.1 ppg, 6.1 rpg, 2.0 apg
It’s wild to think Harrell has played for 3 teams since 2020, when he won Kia Sixth Man of the Yr with the LA Clippers because his play definitely hasn’t fallen off, not to say the massive man is just 28-years-old. Harrell’s future might be somewhat unsure, as he’s facing a felony drug charge stemming from a traffic stop last month.
Dennis Schröder, Houston Rockets, unrestricted
2021-22 stats: 13.5 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 4.6 apg
Played 49 games for the Boston Celtics last season, before moving on to the Rockets in a trade. Schröder appears to be one other player likely sitting in limbo until something happens with Durant. The speedy 28-year-old might be a fit for several teams seeking to add depth within the backcourt. Given the youth movement currently going down in Houston, it’s unlikely Schroder re-signs there.
Collin Sexton, Cleveland Cavaliers, restricted
2021-22 stats: 16.0 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 2.1 apg
It’s likely Sexton is returning to Cleveland, as there appears to be a desire from either side to get a deal done. The 23-year-old played just 11 games last season before suffering a torn meniscus that forced him to miss the remainder of 2021-22. Sexton averaged 20-plus points within the two seasons prior to 2021-22. So, while Darius Garland has emerged as an All-Star, there’s still room for a scorer like Sexton.
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Michael C. Wright is a senior author for NBA.com. You may e-mail him here, find his archive here and follow him on Twitter.
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