Portland Trail Blazers: Ten bargain free agents for the 2021 season

Portland Trail Blazers - DeMarcus Cousins (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Portland Trail Blazers - DeMarcus Cousins (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) /
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Bargain Free Agent #3 – Taj Gibson

Taj Gibson of the New York Knicks has a team option of $10 million next year. If the Knicks decline this then he could be the perfect backup center to Jusuf Nurkic.

Gibson is a great defender, who although undersized at six-foot-nine, is as strong as an ox as well as being crafty in terms of defense on the block and in the post.

Gibson is 34, but he has aged like fine wine, having some of his most efficient years recently. He was excellent recently on the Minnesota Timberwolves. He is a strong offensive rebounder and a great locker room presence.

The Blazers need tough old vets like Taj who have been to the playoffs and who know how to win.

Taj probably has a few years left in the league and wants to play for a team that will be in the playoffs. His market value is probably between $4 and $6 million, an amount that the Blazers should be happy to pay for a backup center.

Bargain Free Agent #4 – DeMarcus Cousins

In a low-risk but potentially high return move, the Blazers should try and re-sign DeMarcus Cousins on the minimum. After two career threatening injuries, the 29-year-old Cousins will never get back to his All-NBA days.

But, a player of Cousins size and skill could still be of value, even if he was just 70 percent of the player he was in his prime. His floor stretching abilities, combined with his great hands and rebounding, means he is a perfect buy low option for this team.

Cousins may not be a plus on defense anymore, but if he can still give you 12 – 18 minutes a night of floor stretching and rebounding, then he is of great value.

Cousins has had terrible luck the last few years, but when fit, he is still good enough to be in the league. He will accept a veterans minimum deal to get back on the court and can be a backup that would punish opposing second units.