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NBA Free Agency 2014: Eric Bledsoe, Ramon Sessions headline group of left behind free agent guards

Time to find out who is left . . .

Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

The major NBA Free agent signings are all locked in right now. No longer do we have to wait on LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony, and Trevor Booker types. Many teams have their rotations set, and need to fill out their bench. The Utah Jazz are at 12 players right now, and possibly 13 if they do go ahead and add Ian Clark (who is scheduled to do Jazz community service later on this summer). Does that mean that the team is done for the off-season? I do not think so. According to my roster theory the Jazz are still down one primary ball handler, and one more wing player. But there's no reason to dive into it and fill up your roster to 15 players before July is over. After all, there are always impressive undrafted rookies to poach, and NBA D-League call ups to fall in love with. (After all, no one cared about Diante Garrett back in July 2013, but he became a hot topic only a year later.)

All that being said, who are the best remaining free agent point guards, shooting guards, and small forwards? It's a mixed group, to say the least. Some players are good enough to be able to reject any offer we could give them. Other players would only take us seriously if every other team rejected them first. Then there are desperate players who want to just make a team -- but many of them may not have anything left in their tanks, so to speak. And of course, there are a bunch of former starters for our previous Jazz teams still looking for jobs. Funny how that works.


Red = rumors of talks with Jazz, Blue = former Jazz player

Guys who are out of our league:

Either because they are implicitly too high profile, or that we don't have the possible role to offer them that they are looking for, there are a few players who our 'out of our league'. Eric Bledsoe (RFA) is not going to come to Utah. Jordan Crawford is stuck in a bad situation, and the Golden State Warriors are option to a sign and trade to send him somewhere good for him. Ramon Sessions is no worse than the 2nd best point guard on a playoff team, and being the caddie to Trey Burke and Dante Exum is not good enough for him. Ray Allen, great, amazing, but chasing that ring. He has left the Miami Heat and is likely to sign with the Cleveland Cavaliers. Shelvin Mack is young, needs minutes, and will not find them in Utah. Hedo Turkoglu needs the ball. He won't see that here. Even though the Jazz have had a lot of Turkish influence on the roster for a while, he's not likely to make that move to Utah to sit on the bench and eat pizza. Shawn Marion is looking to go to a contender. We are not one.


The rest:

These are the guys who may look at a contract offer from the Jazz and see it as something more than agreeable. They will probably fight hard, but in some cases, many of these guys come with a lot of baggage. They are either past their primes, or just not very great NBA players. Still, you need to reach at least 13 guys on the roster. One of these players could make it. Utah has talked with Francisco Garcia and Toure' Murry, according to rumors. Beyond that it's anyone's guess. CHris Douglas-Roberts is a solid player, MIchael Beasley is crazy and a dope head. Mo Williams probably does not think that the third time is the charm. Daniel Gibson really wants to make the Cavs. Toney Douglas will not be happy being the #3 PG. And Ronnie Brewer has one foot out of the league right now. Many of the players in the "Rotation (Meh" and "Bench Fodder groups are players that were just recently waived. There is a reason for that. Teams that did not win only 25 games last year did not want them on their team going forward.


Last, and yes, least:

Well, 40% of this group are former Utah Jazz players. Many of these dudes were solid players when they were younger, if not legit NBA starters. But father time is undefeated. The good news is that these guys stuck around for a long time and are actual grey beards. For a young team with an average age of 24, it would be good to add someone with their voice in the locker room. I'm not crazy about Mike James or Richard Hamilton, they are a little too loud in the locker room if things don't go their way. I do like Chauncey Billups and Earl Watson -- but both look like they are going to retire. Stephen Jackson is ready to stick up for his team mates, which I like. Metta World Peace is ready to fight with Stephen Jackson against fans. And the rest of them are really not going to help any team going forward.


The well is pretty dry. You are almost 100% better off with signing Ian Clark, and then picking up a D-League guy during the season, heck, someone like Myck Kabongo is better than Peyton Siva according to many scouts I have talked with over the last two NBA Draft cycles.