NBA offseason 2024: The most important new additions for free agents

The 2024 NBA offseason officially began on Sunday night, with the free agency period beginning at 6 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. It started with a bang, with big players coming off the board earlier this week, like Paul George joining the Philadelphia 76ers, Klay Thompson signing with the Dallas Mavericks, and Kentavious Caldwell Pope joining the Orlando Magic. Those were the three biggest free agents this offseason, and they're already off the board.

NBA offseason 2024: The most important new additions for free agents

Paul George

With free agency starting on June 30th rather than July 1st, many teams were looking for that key player (or players) that could help them extend their window of competition during free agency. Despite the mad scramble for these key players, however, the Philadelphia 76ers were able to secure Paul George, the biggest name in free agency this year, fending off last-ditch efforts from the Los Angeles Clippers and Golden State Warriors to secure him.

By bringing him from LA to Philly, the Sixers accomplished their goal of getting a third player alongside Joel Embiid and Tyrese Maxey. If the three continue to play like they did last year, the Sixers would have the highest scoring trio in the league. Scoring 83 points per game would be a nightmare for any opposing team in the league.

Additionally, George's game should fit perfectly with Embiid and Maxey. Last year, he made 41.3% of his three-point shots, which is a particularly good skill to have alongside Maxey and Embiid. Both create a lot of wide-open, high-shooting shots for their teammates. Additionally, George can create his own shots and isn't reliant on having the ball in his hands. So he won't hinder Tyrese Maxey's development either. If the three stay healthy and develop good chemistry. Not only are the Sixers a big winner of the free agency period, but they also secured the biggest difference-maker/most impactful free agent on the board.

Klay Thompson

After making their first NBA Finals appearance since 2011, the biggest criticism of the Dallas Mavericks was their lack of a third scorer. This weakness was quite evident during the 2024 NBA Finals, when they lost in five games. This must have bothered Dallas management, because they secured Klay Thompson via sign-and-trade. They sent two second-round picks to Golden State and Josh Green to the Charlotte Hornets, but the Mavericks have acquired that third scorer who will put them at the top of the Western Conference.

Thompson scored 17.9 points per game, had a 43.2% field goal percentage, and made 38.7% of his three-pointers. That scoring average would make him the third-best scorer Dallas has on the roster. Although he's still recovering from a torn ACL, a 60% healthy Klay Thompson is better than most of the league and a better scoring option than the Mavericks have been in recent years. Additionally, he should have plenty of opportunities to improve his scoring average and three-point percentage, with Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving creating plenty of high-percentage shooting opportunities for their teammates.

If all three stay healthy and build their chemistry, the Mavericks have a chance to return to the NBA Finals next season.

Kentavious Caldwell Pope

Last season, the Orlando Magic were one of the fastest-growing teams in the league. Their performance in the regular season helped them secure a playoff spot. Despite losing to the Cleveland Cavaliers in the first round, the Magic have one of the youngest rosters in the league. Their biggest weakness is that they don't have a third-string scorer or wing defender.

Because of that need, the Magic made a big move by signing Kentavious Caldwell-Pope from the Nuggets. He's a player whose skill set fits Orlando's needs in terms of scoring and defense. He can also hit his shots from beyond the three-point line, and his game should mesh well with Paolo Banchero. If KCP can bring his game from Denver to Orlando, the Magic will be a problem in the Eastern Conference.