NBA Free Agents: Ranking the Best Available Guards This Summer

With the NBA Finals about to get underway, it means we’re just a few weeks away from the beginning of NBA Free Agency.

NBA Free agent classes have seemingly dropped off in terms of superstar talent over the years, but this one has the potential for some big names. In terms of the guard class, specifically, it’s highlighted by a pair of restricted free agents.

NBA Offseason Key Free Agency Dates

  • Day After Last Game of NBA Finals: NBA teams may begin negotiating with upcoming free agents who finished the just-completed season on their roster.
  • June 26th: NBA Draft Round 1
  • June 27th: NBA Draft Round 2
  • June 30th: NBA teams may begin negotiating with all other upcoming free agents
  • July 6th: NBA teams may begin signing free agents to contracts
  • Tyrese Maxey is a restricted NBA Free Agent
    Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

    Top 2024 NBA Free Agent Guards

    1. Tyrese Maxey (RFA) – Philadelphia 76ers

    Technically, Maxey is a free agent, but it would be an absolute shocker if he’s anywhere but Philly next season. He had a breakout year alongside Joel Embiid (winning the Most Improved Player Award) and is likely to sign a five-year, $205 million max contract so stay a Sixer. Not only can Philly offer him the most money, but they also are projected to have as much cap space as any NBA team outside of Detroit.

    2. James Harden (UFA) – Los Angeles Clippers

    Harden is most likely to wind back up in Los Angeles, as the Clippers have expressed interest in bringing him back. But he’s also been a pretty unpredictable personality for much of his NBA career. He’s not the superstar he was in Houston, but he’s still a very good facilitator and can hit threes at a high rate. He’ll likely end up with the Clippers again or a different contender in search of an NBA title.

    3. Immanuel Quickley (RFA) – Toronto Raptors

    Similar to Tyrese Maxey, it’s unlikely Quickly actually ends up in a different uniform next year. He’s restricted, so Toronto can match any offer he receives if they don’t agree to an extension. Quickley was a key piece in the deal that sent OG Anunoby to the Knicks, so I can’t imagine that the Raptors would let him go anywhere.

    4. D’Angelo Russell (Player Option) – Los Angeles Lakers

    Russell had a rough start to the 2023-24 season, but after his name started popping up in trade rumors, he really took off for the Lakers. Down the stretch, he got very hot from three and finished the season with a 41.3 percent effort from deep. Russell’s player option for next year is worth $18.6 million, but after his performance down the stretch in LA, he might be able to get the same or more on the open market from a desperate team. Will he hit free agency for a chance at a long-term deal?

    (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

    5. Malik Monk (UFA) – Sacramento Kings

    Consistency has always been an issue for Monk, but when he’s hot, he’s one of the most dangerous shooters in the NBA. There will be a decent amount of interest in the veteran guard when he hits free agency, and a team like Orlando might be willing to overpay to add an experienced shooter to a talented but young roster. All things considered, the case could easily be made that Monk is an even more appealing target than Russell.

    6. Klay Thompson (UFA) – Golden State Warriors

    If you’d told me five years ago I’d be ranking potential free agents down the road and have Klay Thompson behind Malik Monk, I’d have laughed out loud. But that’s kind of where we’re at with Klay. He can still contribute on some nights as a shooter, but the athleticism and ability to move are just gone thanks to an injury-riddled back half of his career. I’m not even sure he knows what he wants to do yet. He’d have to take a discount to stay with the Warriors, or he could go be a veteran shooter for a young team again like Orlando?

    Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

    7. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (UFA) – Denver Nuggets

    Caldwell-Pope is an interesting name. He’s developed a really nice niche in Denver as a role player on a championship team. He’s a very solid defender and can get hot from three fast. For him, would he be willing to take a little bit less to stay competitive, or now that he has a ring would be looking for a bigger payday in less of a winning environment?

    8. Mike Conley (UFA) – Minnesota Timberwolves

    Conley is getting up there in age, but he showed this year that he’s still very capable of running on offense on an NBA title contender. I’m sure Conley would love to stay in Minnesota, but the Timberwolves have a pretty tough salary cap situation. Conley has made a ton of money in his NBA career (over $250 million). Would he take a cheap deal to stay in Minnesota and chase a championship?

    9. Bruce Brown (Team Option) – Toronto Raptors

    Depending on what the Raptors want to do, they could allow Bruce Brown to go this summer. The athletic forward is owed a staggering $23.0 million next season, which the Raptors may have primarily taken on to make the Pascal Siakam trade work this season. With that said, there is no denying that Brown has the capabilities to be a high-end rotation player. While he may not be the most reliable scoring threat, he is a great cutter, rebounder, and multi-positional defender. Everyone saw what he could do while playing a vital role in the Denver Nuggets championship season, so I’d expect him to have a strong market if the Raptors choose to part ways.

    10. Tyus Jones (UFA) – Washington Wizards

    Jones may be one of the most underrated point guards in the NBA. He’s consistently had one of the best AST/TOV ratios, taking great care of the basketball while dishing 7.3 assists per game this season. Jones also displayed some encouraging 3-point shooting during this past season with the Wizards, knocking down 41.4 percent of his 3.9 attempts per game. To be sure, Jones will never be a versatile scorer, but he’s a smart playmaker who hustles on defense and tends to make the right decision. He could be a steal for someone in free agency this year.

    11. Malik Beasley (UFA) – Milwaukee Bucks

    Beasley played a solid role for the Bucks this year and has probably earned himself a payday that could be too rich for Milwaukee to want to match. He shot 44.4 percent from beyond the arc in 2023-24 and has established himself as a very good catch-and-shoot player in the NBA. He might not go in the first wave of free agents, but no doubt he’ll have a decent market from teams trying to add three-point depth.

    12. Gary Trent Jr. (UFA) – Toronto Raptors

    It’s unclear where Gary Trent Jr.’s market currently stands. The shooting guard has a down year scoring just 13.7 points per game after averaging 17.1 points a night over the previous three seasons. He isn’t the most efficient scorer, but he can do so in bunches and has shot 38.6 percent from long range in his career. There is a case to be made that – in the right environment – Trent could be the steal of this free agency. However, he also struggles at times defensively despite his six-foot-five frame and doesn’t fill up many other areas of the box score.

    Other names to consider …

    Russell Westbrook (Player Option), De’Anthony Melton (UFA), Isaiah Joes (Team Option), Jose Alvarado (UFA), Alec Burks (UFA), Eric Gordon (Player Option), Josh Richardson (Player Option), Spencer Dinwiddie (UFA), Reggie Jackson (UFA), and Kyle Lowry (UFA)

    written by

    Matt is from the Chicagoland area and has been working in Chicago sports since 2015 with stops at WGN Radio, the Chicago Blackhawks, Stadium, and NBC Sports Chicago prior to landing at Betsperts. Matt covers just about everything for Betsperts and Bleacher Nation but focuses on the NHL and college football.

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