NBA rumors pop up every day and there is now speculation that a few teams are interested in signing veteran forward Reggie Evans according to Basketball Insiders Moke Hamilton.
Along with the Heat, the Rockets and Celtics have registered interest in Reggie Evans, Basketball Insiders has learned.— Moke Hamilton (@MokeHamilton) February 22, 2016
Evans, a 13-year veteran, has not played yet this season. The 35-year-old last played with the Sacramento Kings last year, averaging 3.7 points and 6.4 rebounds in 16.3 minutes. For his career, the 6-foot-8 power forward averages 4.1 points along with 7.1 rebounds while shooting 46.5 percent from the field in just under 20 minutes a game.
Evans is a high-motor player who is an excellent rebounder at both ends of the floor – he grabbed 22 percent of all rebounds available last season. Evans is also a physical defender despite his size though he is not a much of a factor outside of being able to score on putbacks.
Evans would seemingly be a great benefit be a great fit for each of the three teams mentioned by Hamilton. Houston and Boston are struggling rebounding the ball, ranking 24th and 20th, respectively this season in rebounding rate. Miami is ninth in rebounding but there is concern about Chris Bosh’s health.
The Sun Sentinel reported that Bosh, who is the team’s second leading rebounder at 7.2 a game, will miss his third consecutive game tonight when the Heat hosts the Indiana Pacers with a calf injury. It is unknown when Bosh will be able to return to the court.
The Heat have two open spots available so theoretically signing Evans will not be a problem, however, Miami has committed to getting below the luxury tax this year and must wait until March 6 to sign anyone if they intend to stay below the threshold per the Miami Herald.
The Celtics have an open roster spot after waiving veteran power forward David Lee, who signed with the Dallas Mavericks today. Also, reserve power forward-center Kelly Olynyk is expected to be out three-to-four weeks with a shoulder injury.
Boston biggest issue is on the defensive boards as the C’s are 24th in defensive rate at 74.8 percent. Jared Sullinger is Boston’s best rebounder, grabbing a rebound every 2.8 minutes or so.
Evans may not be the ideal fit for Boston with their plethora of big men, but he would help the Celtics in their biggest area of need. Don’t expect Boston to make any rash decisions as head coach Brad Stevens told reporters that the team would take its time filling the roster spot.
“Based on all of our discussions, we’re only filling our roster with people that we think can help us.I think it’s more important that we find the right fit for our roster if we’re going to fill that spot. And we don’t have to fill that spot.”
Houston is an interesting case. The Rockets had their trade with the Detroit Pistons and Philadelphia 76ers that sent Donatas Motiejunas and Marcus Thornton to Detroit voided due to health concerns of Motiejunas’ back. The void of the trade means Houston is back over the luxury tax threshold and that the Rockets don’t currently have an open roster spot.
The voided trade also sends Joel Anthony back to Detroit from Philadelphia and nulls and voids the $2.28 million and $947, 276 trade exceptions that the trade was going to create for the Rockets.
While there may not be a lot of attractive free agents available who are fantastic rebounders there are several recently released players that possibly could help playoff contending teams. Some of these players include JJ Hickson, Andrea Bargnani, DeJuan Blair, Jason Thompson, and Chris Copeland. Hickson is the most viable of the players listed. A pair of guards, Jared Cunningham and John Jenkins were also recently released but they are younger and won’t likely draw interest from playoff contending teams.
[Photo by Rick Bowmer/Associated Press]