5 Most Overpaid Free Agents Following a Crazy Night in the NBA
The first night of 2019 NBA free agency was more chaotic than anyone could have expected. While news broke early that Kevin Durant will be joining Kyrie Irving in Brooklyn, a flurry of other moves, including a handful of sign-and-trades, literally reshaped the league overnight.
With teams handing out piles of cash like never before, there are destined to be contracts that don't quite pan out when all is said and done. Here are the five biggest overpays so far in NBA free agency.
5. Al Horford (agreed to four-year, $109 million contract with 76ers)
Al Horford was one of the most coveted free agents this summer, as the 33-year-old is still a prime defender who can facilitate the offense from the power forward or center spot. Due to his age, however, Horford will be 36 entering the final year of his deal, when he is set to make over $25 million. It may be a tough pill to swallow if Big Al experiences a decline, but can also be a reasonable figure if he maintains his current production. Only time will tell, but the Sixers were clearly willing to take the risk as they reshaped their roster with a number of moves.
4. Tobias Harris (agreed to five-year, $180 million contract with 76ers)
Another move the Sixers made was re-signing Tobias Harris, who they acquired via trade during the 2018-19 regular season. Harris saw a sizable dip in his three-point shooting following the trade (43 percent down to 33 percent), which is not what Philly was hoping for from the catch-and-shoot specialist. They decided to commit to Harris anyway, throwing him a max deal after giving up a lot to acquire him in the first place. Harris will have a whole offseason to get better acclimated in the offense, and for a player averaging $36 million over the next five years, the pressure is on him to make good.
3. Khris Middleton (agreed to 5-year, $178 million contract with Bucks)
Khris Middleton fell just short of a max contract, as he will be getting $2 million less compared to Harris, despite having an All-Star appearance under his belt. His deal also includes a player option in the fifth season, unlike Harris. While the amount is still steep, it is a deal many are saying Milwaukee had to make, in an effort to ensure Giannis Antetokounmpo signs a long-term contract in 2021. The issue is, Middleton is a solid No. 2 option, just not a great one. Soon to be 28, will he be enough to get the Bucks over the hump as title contenders, as he enters the last prime years of his career? Milwaukee is betting the farm that Middleton will be that guy.
2. Harrison Barnes (agreed to 4-year, $85 million contract with Kings)
Soon to be entering his eighth season in the NBA, it's safe to say we've seen the ceiling for the once promising lottery pick. Harrison Barnes is a solid player, but really doesn't stand out in any one area. While he was seeking more money, the Kings are still coughing up a hefty salary for a guy who averaged just 14.3 points following a midseason trade from the Mavericks last season. Barnes won't kill Sacramento from a cap perspective, but he also probably won't make them a whole lot better.
1. Terry Rozier (agreed to a three-year, $58 million contract with Hornets)
While the contracts on this list are getting smaller, the players are becoming more irrelevant. Following news that Kemba Walker was going to walk, the Hornets made a panic move by signing Terry Rozier for nearly $20 million a year. Three years is a reasonable contract length, but Rozier totally bottomed out as a backup last year, averaging nine points on 38.7% shooting following a memorable playoffs run in 2018. Perhaps he can thrive in a starting role, but the Hornets are taking a fairly big risk on a guy who may not have that in him.
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