VI Mobile Scores and Betting OddsVI Mobile Scores and Betting Odds Be Social
Betting Tools

Eyes on Howard when NBA free agency opens

Dwight Howard could leave, Chris Paul is expected to stay, and plenty more will happen beyond Los Angeles when the NBA's free agency period opens.

Frontcourt players such as Josh Smith, David West, Andrew Bynum and Al Jefferson also can become free agents Monday at midnight EDT.

Howard heads the class after spending one largely unhappy season with the Lakers. They would like him back and can outspend other suitors by about $30 million, according to NBA rules, but teams such as Houston, Dallas and Atlanta will try to persuade him to take less money for more enjoyment.

He didn't fit right in Mike D'Antoni's offense and could end up with his third home in less than a year, having been dealt from Orlando to Los Angeles just last August.

Bynum was in that deal, too, going from the Lakers to Philadelphia in what was a four-team trade. He sat out all season because of knee problems and could leave without ever playing a game for the 76ers.

The Clippers are much happier with Paul, and he has plenty of reasons to stay in Los Angeles. The Clippers won their first Pacific Division title last season and will be coached now by Doc Rivers, who headed across the country after the Clippers sent a future first-round draft pick to Boston to let him out of his contract.

Players can agree to deals any time after free agency opens but can't sign until July 10, after next season's salary cap has been set.

That's when the blockbuster draft night trade that sent Kevin Garnett from Boston to Brooklyn will become official.

The more severe penalties in the 2011 Collective Bargaining Agreement now start to take effect, with stiffer luxury taxes and more restrictions on sign-and-trades.

Teams are chasing the two-time defending champion Miami Heat, who will try to hold onto key reserve Chris Andersen. The San Antonio Spurs, whom they beat in seven games in the NBA Finals, would see the end of their longtime Big Three if Manu Ginobili does not re-sign. Starter Tiago Splitter is a restricted free agent, so the Spurs can match an offer.

West helped Indiana take Miami to seven games in the Eastern Conference finals, and the Pacers would like to keep the veteran power forward. The versatile Smith (Atlanta) and the rugged Jefferson (Utah) also are available.

Key guards on the market include Olympian Andre Iguodala of Denver and Sixth Man of the Year J.R. Smith of New York.

Copyright 2018 by STATS LLC and Associated Press.
Any commercial use or distribution without the express written
consent of STATS LLC and Associated Press is strictly prohibited.

Mejia: Thursday's Essentials
Akins: Hoop Trends - Thursday Thursday's Best Bet
Rogers: Friday's Tip Sheet
Mejia: Dinero Tracker - March 22
News: Win Total Betting Update
Popovich stays the course for Spurs
LeBron, Cavs send message with win
Hornets' Howard suspended after tech
Why Buy Picks From
NBA Pro Basketball Expert Handicapper Sports Picks Records
NBA Hot Streaks
8-0 L8, 11-1 Run, 11-1 G-Plays
8-0 L8, 15-3 Streak, 6-0 G-Plays
5-1 Picks, 3-0 G-Plays, +2,717 TY
19-6 Picks, 17-6 GPlays, 11-1 Totals
3-0 Guarantees, +4,410 This Year
4-0 L4 Picks, 14-6 L20 Guarantees
9-4 L13, 34-18 Run, 9-1 G-Plays
7-3 Picks, 28-14 G-Plays, +2,089
5-1 L6 Guarantees, 15-7 L22 Totals
4-1 Last 5 NBA Picks
4-2 L4 Days, 4-2 Totals, 5-2 GPlays
NBA Pro Basketball Expert Sports Picks
Money Leaders
Handicapper Money
Antony Dinero + 4610
Alex Smart + 2717
Kevin Rogers + 2089
Last 7 Day Leaders
Handicapper Money
Micah Roberts + 700
Antony Dinero + 614
Jim Feist + 495
Percentage Leaders
Handicapper Pct
Joe Nelson 57 %
Kevin Rogers 56 %
Alex Smart 56 %
Guaranteed Leaders
Handicapper Money
Alex Smart + 2485
Antony Dinero + 2313
Kevin Rogers + 2309
Over-Under Leaders
Handicapper Money
Antony Dinero + 3463
The Gold Sheet + 601
Alex Smart + 538
Member Leaders
Handicapper Money
Antony Dinero + 1335
Bruce Marshall + 847
Vince Akins + 570
corner graphic
With a VI Gold Membership, you can SAVE 20% off Daily Pick packages, SAVE 10% off a Live Odds Pro subscription, and receive access to up to 1,000 Member Plays each month!
VI Gold Membership