The NBA offseason is right around the corner, and teams are now busy planning how to prepare for an unusual 2020-2021 season.
In just a couple of weeks, a new NBA champion will be crowned. Only the Miami Heat, Denver Nuggets, Boston Celtics, and the Los Angeles Lakers are left. The deck is stacked in favor of the Lakers. However, based on what has transpired so far in the bubble, the road to the championship is as tricky as ever.
While those four teams are busy inside, the other 26 teams are gearing up for their 2020-2021 season. The NBA offseason will not be stacked with big-name players. However, there are enough role players that could be the difference-makers in the teams.
Below are three players that could make lots of noise in the offseason.
Clippers will pursue Jrue Holiday in the NBA offseason
Contrary to popular belief, the Clippers weren’t ready for a championship run just yet. It was proven when they fumbled a 3-1 lead against the Denver Nuggets. The hole in their system was exposed as they needed a true leader and a ball handler to win it all. Jrue Holiday fits the requirement perfectly.
Individually, the players in the roster of the Clippers are phenomenal. However, they needed a glue guy that could steer the ship in the right direction. As such, the Clippers’ front office is already busy devising plans on possibly landing Holiday to be the floor leader.
The Clippers went all-in on Paul George, so they traded the majority of their first-round picks to the Thunder. Neither do they have enough players under contract that can entice the Pelicans to give up Holiday.
Montrezl Harrell’s future with the Clips is still up in the air
Harrell was virtually unplayable in the series against the Nuggets. Opposing nimble big men spell the death of the spark plug that Harrell brings on the floor. He can sign with whatever team he wants to this offseason, but it remains to be seen if other teams will invest in him.
There are teams that need the goods that he can bring on the court. However, they will have to weigh the pros and cons. Shams Carania reports,
“Harrell and the Clippers have mutual interest to find a deal, but Harrell is expected to be sought-after in the marketplace and have multiple suitors.”
Hassan Whiteside is now an odd fit in the Blazers team
Whiteside’s M.O. on the court is clear. He cleans the boards and defends the paint. Outside of that, he’s a mediocre screener and post-up player. Several teams are in need of a big guy on the floor, but they’ll need more than just the defense of Whiteside. Analysts don’t see the Blazers signing him back because Jusuf Nurkic is back and healthy.
When clicking from all cylinders, Whiteside is a dominating big man. He just has to evolve his game. As such, some teams could swoop Whiteside out of the free agency for the right price. If so, he can convert a team to an instant contender with his choking defense in the paint.
Image from SANFRANFANAD/YouTube thumbnail