3 teams who should still consider signing Lance Stephenson
Veteran forward Lance Stephenson is still without a team four weeks after free agency opened, which is somehow understandable, considering that he just finished an underwhelming season with the Los Angeles Lakers.
He can still provide quality minutes for any team, especially with the right amount of playing time. He’s a decent 3-point shooter and is still an average defender, which should make teams consider signing him, at least for next season.
There are several teams who I think should make the call to Lance, as they will have some type of benefit from signing him.
The Sixers are stacked with talent, they, along with the Utah Jazz, are expected to be two of the best defensive teams in the league next season. But what they do lack is 3-point shooting. Aside from Mike Scott, who shot 41 percent from deep last season, no one from Philly is shooting more than 35 percent from beyond the arc.
That’s where Stephenson could come in. He shot 37 percent from 3 last season, and he will definitely help the Sixers spread the floor. Defensively, Lance is not as good as he once was, but he can still get the job done.
If the Sixers sign Stephenson, they will be an even better team.
The Mavericks are pretty optimistic about next season as they formally begin their post-Dirk Nowitzki era. The tandem of Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis should be enough to excite the team and its fans, and with their supporting cast mostly filled by young players, they will need a veteran to take the leadership role.
Sure, Courtney Lee is already there, but it also wouldn’t hurt them to add Stephenson to the mix. Just like what he did with the Lakers, he can mentor the team’s young core while providing quality minutes off the bench. Lance and JJ Barea (if healthy) could help carry the offensive load for the second unit, and the addition of Stephenson will give them another threat from beyond the arc.
With the addition of Russell Westbrook, the Rockets now have two of the best scoring guards in the league. He and reigning MVP James Harden will undoubtedly shoulder the offensive responsibilities, but just like most teams, they need players who can make the 3-point shot on a consistent basis to make things easier for their superstar tandem to do their damage inside the arc.
Eric Gordon and PJ Tucker are their primary 3-point shooters, but adding Stephenson would make them a more dangerous team. As most experts have already pointed out, Harden and Westbrook’s supporting cast will definitely get a ton of open shots, and both guys won’t have any problems passing the ball to their teammates, as long as they can consistently hit their shots.
The Rockets led the league in 3-point attempts last season with at least 45 per game, and that is expected to continue next season. Adding Stephenson will definitely help Houston in this aspect, and if he is signed, he will most probably take care of the toughest defensive assignments of the team.
Given the fact that last season didn’t turn out the way Stephenson expected it to be, he will definitely look for another opportunity to prove that he can contribute on a winning team. The Sixers, Mavericks, and Rockets would benefit a lot from him and giving him the veteran’s minimum wouldn’t hurt. If he lives up to their expectation, then good. If not, they can just waive him.
Low risk, high reward deal.