NBA 2018-19 Free Agency: Worst Contract By Team - Southwest Division
The Southwest Division has been one of the strongest in the NBA, sending at least four teams to the playoffs seven times since the league's expansion to 30 teams in 2004. For comparison, all five other divisions had seven seasons with such accomplishment combined, in that time period.
San Antonio, the most successful of those teams, had to deal with some atypical drama this summer. With Pop's future questionable, the Spurs will like to try to keep their 21-year postseason streak alive.
Houston came as close as anyone believed one could get to dethrone the Warriors. Anything less than a conference finals will be a disappointment.
After losing Cousins and Rondo to Western Conference rivals, New Orleans could lose Anthony Davis in two years as well. The Pelicans need to show a lot more commitment to their star player.
Dallas will look to rejuvenate their roster and begin the transition to a new, post-Nowitzki era, giving the reins to Dennis Smith Jr. and Luka Doncic.
Memphis is still trying to figure out their new style. The "Grit and Grind" era is history, and the Grizzlies are starting to mix up their team.
These Southwest Division teams made some moves in the offseason, but not all of them were well thought of. Here are the worst contracts each team signed this following summer.
#1 Houston Rockets - Clint Capela
After the departure of Trevor Ariza, the Rockets couldn’t afford losing another starter. This explains why they rushed to sign Clint Capela to a 4-year/$90 million contract.
However, around the time the signing occurred, the team with the most cap space in the league was Sacramento, with about 11 million dollars in space. If they were to offer Capela a contract, the most they could have offered on a four-year deal was less than 48 million dollars. That means Houston signed Capela to a contract worth almost twice as much as the second biggest offer he could get.
Furthermore, Portland's Jusuf Nurkic, who played similar minutes and had a close production level to those of the Swiss last year, signed for just 48 million dollars with the Blazers. Even though Capela is more valuable to the Rockets than Nurkic is to Portland, this huge difference is not proportional.
Houston needed to bring back Capela, but by a quick evaluation of the market, they should have known a more modest offer would have sufficed.