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Winners of 2014’s NBA free agency

The culture of today’s NBA is profoundly different than the NBA of 30 or even 20 years ago. Today, for the most part, players rarely stay in one place for an entire career. Granted, there are still winners to be named in this summer’s free agency period.

Winner: Cleveland Cavaliers

A domino effect was set off once LeBron James decided he would leave the Heat and return to Cleveland for a second act. James decided he wants to return to his hometown of Akron, Ohio, and play for the Cleveland Cavaliers under a contract that assures him nearly 42 million for two years. Superstar Kyrie Irving will be playing side by side with James, and along with a talented cast of athletes, the Cavaliers a threat in the East. The Cavaliers may still not be done making big moves.

A possible trade involving their No. 1 overall pick in Andrew Wiggins for All-Star Kevin Love is still a possibility As for the Eastern conference, this is the conference where LeBron led the Heat to four consecutive titles. With LeBron gone, the Heat have less of a shot to make it five straight titles. In an already weak conference, and the loss of guard Lance Stephenson , the Indiana Pacers, presents a wide-open gap for LeBron and the Cavs to win the conference.

Winner: Dallas Mavericks

For the Dallas Mavericks, the departure of Vince Carter and Shawn Marion made way for the Mavericks to welcome back Tyson Chandler and bring in newcomers Raymond Felton and Chandler Parsons. An athletic frontcourt to go along with an experienced and athletic backcourt in Raymond Felton and Monta Ellis give the Mavs as strong a starting five you’ll see in the NBA.

Dirk Nowitzki took a paycut by accepting a three-year, $25 million deal, which made it easier to sign the young promising player in Parsons. He agreed to a three-year, $46 million deal. 

Chandler and Felton both played together in New York, which makes the transition easy for the new point guard—Felton. Felton is not a scoring point guard but what he brings to the team is the ability to regulate the action on the court.

This starting five will make it difficult for other defenses to keep up with— Parsons is able to shoot the ball as well as put it on the floor, Nowitzki does what he does best and Monta Ellis is a slasher shooting-guard, who can create his own shot. The Mavs have reloaded and are ready to make another run at the title.

Winner: Chicago Bulls

Finally, the Chicago Bulls stopped trying to sign scoring machine Carmelo Anthony and went with plan B by signing NBA champion Pau Gasol and 23-year-old big man Nikola Mirotic from Real Madrid to compliment All-Star center Joakim Noah.

They have arguably the best frontcourt in the NBA despite power forward, Carlos Boozer, joining the Lakers. Its difficult, but do not  forget about Derrick Rose. The Bulls have managed to pose some threat in their conference without their MVP. They have done so because of what head coach, Tom Thibodeau, has done for the defense. The missing puzzle pieceis a healthy Rose. Above all, the Gasol acquisition gives the Bulls a high favorability in the weak Eastern Conference. 

Whether you like the new faces in new places, one certainty remains true. It sure does make for an exciting NBA season ahead.

Luis Barrio may be reached at [email protected]

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About the Contributor
Luis Barrio
Luis Barrio, Staff Reporter
Luis Barrio is a staff reporter specializing in Sports. He is also the co-host of the Prospector News Weekly, a weekly broadcast that covers all of the top stories at UTEP. He is a Senior graduating in December 2014. Luis is a product of El Paso, TX. He enjoys being outdoors and being physically active. His family comes before anything else. He is a big sports enthusiast and a fan of good movies. Luis spent the summer of 2013 interning for ABC-7 KVIA. Upon graduation Luis aspires to work for CBS as a sports broadcaster. “I never saw a wild thing sorry for itself. A bird will drop frozen dead from a bough without ever a having felt sorry for itself.” D.H. Lawrence
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Winners of 2014’s NBA free agency