Kentavious Caldwell-Pope will become an unrestricted free agent who is free to sign with a team of his choosing. That comes after the shooting guard had his rights renounced by the Detroit Pistons.
According to ESPN, the Pistons have severed ties with Kentavious Caldwell-Pope after acquiring guard Avery Bradley from the Boston Celtics. The trade sends Marcus Morris to the Celtics and ends Caldwell-Pope’s tumultuous time with the Pistons. Caldwell-Pope is now assured to be with a brand new team next season.
Getting his rights renounced by the Pistons comes at a terrible time for Kentavious Caldwell-Pope. The majority of the NBA teams are done spending their available cap space.
There are a few teams who have the cap room to add Caldwell-Pope. The Chicago Bulls, Dallas Mavericks, and Indiana Pacers are among them.
According to Sportrac, the Bulls have the most practical cap space, with over $26 million. They are followed by the Phoenix Suns. The Chicago Bulls and Indiana Pacers would make the most sense for Caldwell-Pope since both teams have shooting guards they received via trades. But those players, Zach LaVine and Victor Oladipo, also come with questions.
LaVine is coming off a torn ACL and will not be ready to contribute until December at the earliest. Meanwhile, Oladipo is healthy, but his inability to create his own shot last season made people question his ceiling. Both the Bulls and Pacers could slide Kentavious Caldwell-Pope into the shooting guard spot, but his ability to play on the wing eliminates forcing him to play there.
In order to sign Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, the Chicago Bulls would likely have to find a taker for center Robin Lopez. Lopez was one of the top eight centers in the NBA last season. Because he plays on a team-friendly deal, trading him would be easy.
Another way the Bulls could sign Kentavious Caldwell-Pope is to simply buy Dwyane Wade out. It is something that the Bulls are considering already, but according to Bulls’ president John Paxson, a buyout would have to benefit the Bulls (courtesy of ESPN).
“I will say this, that in this type of scenario, it would have to benefit us. It would absolutely have to benefit us. Dwyane was a great pro last year, and he’s been around a lot of different situations. He was in Miami when they had a couple rebuilding years as well. So right now we’re operating under the assumption that he’ll be here. But like I said, if that subject is ever broached by them, then it would have to be advantageous for us.”
The possibility of adding a young and athletic veteran with the ability to stretch the floor should be enough of reason for the Bulls to cut ties with Wade.
The Indiana Pacers are a team who can sign Kentavious Caldwell-Pope outright, but they may decide to wait until the rest of the free agency landscape shapes up. Within the next couple of days, players like Caldwell-Pope will find their options are even smaller once all is said and done. It is likely that barring another team with cap room coming to sign Caldwell-Pope, he may have to force himself to take a prove-it deal for one or two years.
According to Lakers Nation, the Los Angeles Lakers will be one of the teams making an attempt to sign Kentavious Caldwell-Pope.
The other team that could be in the running for Kentavious Caldwell-Pope are the Brooklyn Nets. Caldwell-Pope would be the Nets’ fallback option if the Washington Wizards decide to match the maximum offer sheet (courtesy of Yahoo Sports) the Nets gave to Otto Porter.
Would either of these teams be interested in Kentavious Caldwell-Pope? A better question would be if Caldwell-Pope is intrigued by signing with either of those teams. Caldwell-Pope does want to receive a hefty payday, but it might force him to sign with a team that might not suit him well.
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope’s days with the Detroit Pistons did not go as expected. He was looked at as a future fixture, but his fix with the Pistons was far from perfect. Sometimes players put themselves in a good contractual position, but it’s not a position where they can thrive on the basketball court.
The best landing spots for Kentavious Caldwell-Pope are the Chicago Bulls, Indiana Pacers, and Memphis Grizzlies. The Grizzlies would not be able to sign Caldwell-Pope because of their salary cap situation, but he fits exactly what the Grizzlies want in a player.
Where will Kentavious Caldwell-Pope land now that he is free to play where he chooses.
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