Day one of NBA free agency saw a ton of movement with more to come. We take a look at the biggest day one winners and losers of the craziest free agency period in NBA history.

Day One Free Agency Winners

Winners Brooklyn Nets

The Nets got Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving, which makes this a grand slam. It also makes the Nets one of the free agency winners. Not only did they get those two players, they also won New York. Make no mistake, Knicks fans will never switch teams, that’s not how New Yorkers roll. There is however an entire generation of young people in the Big Apple that have no reason to feel any loyalty to the Knicks.

There is no question that getting the two biggest available free agents who were supposed to be playing in Madison Square next year to choose Brooklyn and the Barclays Center instead is the icing on their free agency cake.

It’s hard not to think that James Dolan is somehow responsible for this. Regardless he will get all of of the blame until he decides to sell which is unlikely considering his tremendous ego.

Winners Philadelphia 76ers

Their new starting lineup next year will be: Ben Simmons, Josh Richardson, Tobias Harris, Al Horford and Joel Embiid. As of right now, that is the best starting 5 in the NBA. That doesn’t mean they will win a championship but the foundation is in place. The acquisition of Al Horford is the key move because it not only gives them a great passing big man to play with Embiid, he is also insurance in case Embiid gets hurt which seems inevitable.

Honorable mention winners: Utah Jazz

Their big move came before free agency when they traded for Mike Conley. They added exactly what they were lacking by signing Bojan Bogdanovic from the Indiana Pacers. This year’s playoff loss showed that Donovan Mitchell needs help if this team is going to take the next step.

Obviously the addition of Conley will go a long way in Mitchell’s improvement but so will Bogdanovic. With Mitchell playing more off the ball, Bogdanovic will help the Jazz offense space the floor, something they have always struggled to do.

When you pair this newfound offensive potential with their already elite defense (Bogdanovic is not a great defender but he is much better than a few years ago), you now have a team that should challenge for home court advantage in the first round of the playoffs at the very least.

Day One Free Agency Losers

Losers: New York Knicks

We don’t like to spend too much time talking about losers and the New York Knicks are the epitome of that word. When it comes to breaking down the day one winners and losers in free agency, the Knicks are by far the biggest losers. They play in the biggest market in the country, yet nobody wants to play for them. That almost says it all but we haven’t mentioned James Dolan yet. Apparently, Dolan didn’t want to offer Kevin Durant a max contract, even though the rest of the league was prepared to do so.

This just about sums up what Knicks fans are thinking this morning:

Losers: Los Angeles Clippers

They re-signed Patrick Beverly and that’s it. Second year guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander will be the starter at point and Lou Williams is their closer. The Beverley contract doesn’t make much sense at $40 million. This column is about winners and losers from the first day of free agency, so by July 6th they might eventually come out as winners.

That being said, there were a ton of guys available and they didn’t acquire any of them. All year we heard that the Clippers have room for two max contracts. The biggest name left on the board other than their number one target (Kawhi Leonard) is DeMarcus Cousins.

Nobody knows if Cousins will ever be the player he once was not to mention possible chemistry issues. The thing is the Clippers need a starting center on the roster. As good as Montrezl Harrell has been, how long can you ask a 6’8 guy to play 30+ minutes at center before his body breaks down?

The only starting center available other than Cousins right now is Willie Cauley-Stein. But Cauley-Stein isn’t an upgrade over Harrell. There are more questions than answers in Clipperland today which makes them one of the losers from day one.

Honorable mention losers: Charlotte Hornets

The Hornets big move was to give Terry Rozier $58 million dollars…for what?!?! A few things need to be mentioned in order to understand the incompetence happening in Charlotte. First of all, why didn’t they trade Kemba Walker instead of letting him leave if they knew they weren’t going to re-sign him? They probably didn’t expect him to make the All NBA third team, which made him eligible for more money. The thing is it’s not like it was shocking either if you were paying attention to the rest of the guards in the league.

The other red flag is the fact that the most money Charlotte ever paid Kemba in a season is $12 million. Now they’re going to pay Terry Rozier $58 million for 3 years…YIKES!! The Hornets might legitimately have the worst roster in the NBA right now. There was no move for them to make in free agency that would drastically improve this team but the Rozier sends a bad message about how they treat their stars which makes them losers on the day.

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Junior Browne

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