Originally posted on Taking Bad Schotz  |  Last updated 7/3/12

Each off-season, teams overpay for best free agents available, particularly at center as we have witnessed once again with Roy Hibbert being offered a max contract.  While nearly every free agent gets a bigger contract than they’re worth, there are still guys available who can give teams good production at a cheaper price.  Here are nine examples.

1.  Anthony Randolph

Randolph is a classic example of a former lottery pick who just hasn’t found the right situation.  He was misused in Golden State, didn’t get a chance to play in New York, and played behind one of the league’s top big men in Minnesota.  The T-Wolves declined the qualifying offer for Randolph, making him an unrestricted free agent.  Randolph is just 22 years old, and at 6’11, he possesses athleticism that many big men in this league don’t have.  He’s already a good shot blocker and can run the floor, but he just needs to work on his offensive game.

2.  Michael Beasley

First two people named on this list played for Minnesota last season, quite a coincidence.  Beasley has been an enigma ever since he was picked 2nd overall, but at the same time, he has shown flashes of great scoring ability. He can play either the 3 or 4, but Beasley won’t be getting the payday that he envisioned when he first came to the NBA due to inconsistent play and sub par work ethic.  There is risk here, but it could be well worth it.

3.  Brandon Roy

Brandon Roy has been gaining interest from a number of teams who want to give him the chance to come out of retirement.  Once one of the NBA’s rising stars, injuries forced Roy to retire this season, however he feels he is healthy enough to make a successful comeback.  No team will overpay for Roy given the durability issues, but if he is actually healthy, then signing him can save a GM’s job for the foreseeable future.

4.  Jason Terry

Terry has been an under the radar free agent due to the hype of Deron Williams and Ray Allen being the more coveted veteran three point shooting threats.  Terry however at 34 years old still hasn’t lost a step and would be a great addition to any contending team if Dallas decides to let him walk.

5.  Aaron Brooks

After playing in China last season, many people forgot about Aaron Brooks, the former Most Improved Player of the Year.  It remains to be seen if Phoenix is looking to match any offer for Brooks since they set their sights on either signing Goran Dragic or retaining Nash; keep in mind they just so happened to draft Kendall Marshall last Thursday.  Brooks struggled in his most recent NBA season, however he’s a proven 3-point shooter who is still very young, and could come at a reasonable price.

6.  Brian Scalabrine

Just for laughs, giggles, and fan favoritism.  I know NBA Memes would appreciate this.  Any team that needs help selling tickets or needs a new fan favorite should sign Scal for the minimum.  Do you think Seattle regrets never making a move for him?

7. Jamal Crawford

Crawford struggled in Portland last season, but with the firing of Nate McMillan and the other mid-season transactions they made, there was a lot of chaos going on within the organization.  At 32 years old, Crawford still has plenty left in the tank and can make an impact for any team coming off the bench.  After a disappointing campaign last year, Crawford’s contract demands shouldn’t be too high.

8.  JJ Hickson

Hickson is another guy who hasn’t had the right situation to succeed in at this point of his career.  He has posted decent numbers throughout his career, as he has proven to be a good scorer in the low post, however, he hasn’t had any consistency, playing for 3 teams in five seasons.  He played well for Portland at the end of the season last year, and after offering Roy Hibbert the max (why?), it looks unlikely that Portland will bring him back.  Give Hickson the chance to start, and I think he could deliver.

9.  Chauncey Billups

With future hall of fame point guards Steve Nash and Jason Kidd on the market, people have been sleeping on Billups, who should make a successful recovery following his season ending injury back in February.  The Clippers would love to resign him, however it looks like Billups is going to test the market and see what’s available.  In his short time in LA last season, Billups proved capable of starting not only at the 1, but at the 2 as well.  Given his playoff experience, combined with the fact that he’s 35 years old coming back from injury, Billups can be had for cheap.


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