Strategy: Free Agents

This is something I have not used in the first two rounds. Timing of pick for free-agents-to-be. I have used this a lot in the past few years and I plan to use it in the Conference Finals. Soon-to-be free agents will not readily admit it, but they are extra-motivated to perform beyond expectation so as to showcase themselves to their current team and potential suitors in the summer. They show up hot either on elimination games, or on their last potential game at home.

Owners, GMs and coaches are smart enough, but sometimes in performance evaluations, the past is forgotten and this question is asked, "What have you done for me lately?"

Note that this may not hold true for a few players, but I have seen it many times before. Here is a list of free agents this summer with significant playing time in these playoffs...

Pacers:
  • Evan Turner (R)
  • Lance Stephenson

Heat:
  • Ray Allen
  • Chris Anderson (P)
  • Shane Battier
  • Chris Bosh (E)
  • Mario Chalmers
  • Udonis Haslem (P)
  • LeBron James (E)
  • Dwyane Wade (E)

Thunder:
  • Caron Butler
  • Derek Fisher
  • Thabo Sefolosha

Spurs:
  • Boris Diaw
  • Tim Duncan (P)
  • Patrick Mills

Those with player option (P) may take it easy. Those who are restricted (R) may be a little motivated to perform so as to make a showing for their current team. Those who have early termination option (E) may or may not be so desperate to show-off, unless a player is already thinking of leaving. Of the Big Three, I don't think they'll leave Miami. All of them have earned a lot of money already, it's now all about winning.

As for my pick plan, I am reserving Lance Stephenson and Derek Fisher for elimination games. With regards to Caron Butler, he is already proving to be a veteran voice in the locker, bench and the floor. With Thabo Sefolosha, hmm...



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13 comments:

  1. Taking David West and then Caron Butler

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  2. Ibaka, he is now listed as day to day... :)

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    1. Well that's good news!

      I don't think Ibaka can get into G3 yet but the Thunder will be in high spirits by this development. They'll be looking to try to extend the series as much as possible for Ibaka's return. Thus, it might be good to pick Westbrook or KD on Sunday (bounceback game too).

      Or it's a placebo...

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    2. Already have Westbrook lined up. Time to go big buddy!

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  3. So who do you pick from pacers today?

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    1. I'd pick Stephenson on an elim game.
      So maybe George Hill.
      Maybe. Still undecided.

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  4. If you had to pick a heat tonight and a spurs player tomo with them all available... Who do you pick?

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    1. Your best available.
      LBJ, and Parker (and coz of the impending worsened injury too)

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  5. Taong, just as a friendly warning, I have to inform you that I picked George Hill for tonight and RW for tomorrow. So maybe you better think again about your Hill pick ;)

    Should Ibaka return and play well, the sieres would just get interesting again, even though I still think the Spurs will win.

    I am really interested in seeing the Pacers playing on the road. They are near unbeatable when they are not playing at home.

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    1. Well, I had two Pacers starters left. I picked George Hill, and left Stephenson on the table, who turned out to be the best Indiana player DTTF-wise. Who´d have thought it? :)

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