NBA Free Agency - From Playoffs to Pay Day[caption id="attachment_16994" align="aligncenter" width="388"] Grantland.com[/caption] One thing is for sure, the best way to boost your free agent stock is by putting up good numbers during the playoffs before. But it doesn’t always work out for the players or the teams long term. As we approach free agency let’s take a quick look back at some of the players who received large contracts after playing crucial roles in previous playoff campaigns, and take a look at some who may benefit from what they did this postseason. James Posey - Forward In 2007, Posey signed a two-year deal (the second year being a player option) worth approximately $6.67 million with the Boston Celtics. In the 2008 NBA Playoffs Posey helped Boston win the Championship with his tough defense, averaging 22 minutes with 6.7 points, 3.6 rebounds, one assist and one steal per game. On the back of this he opted out of his contract and signed a four-year deal worth about $25 million with the New Orleans Hornets. In 2009, Posey’s six million dollars got the Hornets nearly nine points and five rebounds off the bench in 28 minutes per game. He was eventually moved to the Pacers who released in late 2011. Trevor Ariza – Forward In 2009, Ariza played an important role securing the Los Angeles Lakers 15th NBA Championship. Ariza started all 23 playoff games averaging 11.3 points, 4.2 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 1.6 steals in 31 minutes per game. Through free agency Ariza signed a five-year $33 million deal with the Houston Rockets. Ariza averaged career highs in minutes 36.5, points 14.9, rebounds 5.6, assists 3.8 and steals 1.8 before being traded in a four team-five player deal (funnily enough involving James Posey) to the Hornets. Currently he plays for the Washington Wizards after being traded for Rashard Lewis in 2012. J.J. Barea – Guard In 2010, the Dallas Mavericks used Barea’s team option and kept him for $1.8 million. During the playoffs Barea averaged 8.9 points, two rebounds and 3.4 assists in 18 minutes. He is probably best remembered against the Lakers in the Western Conference Finals for separate incidents against Ron Artest and Andrew Bynum who both got suspended. Dallas went on to beat Miami in the Finals. After the season Dallas offered J.J. a one year deal, not surprisingly Barea rejected that offer and signed with the Minnesota Timberwolves, a contract worth around $19 million over four years. Barea averaged career highs in minutes 25.2, points 11.3, rebounds 2.8 and assists 5.7 during the 2011-2012 season. He remains on the Timberwolves roster. - With free agency open on July 1, let’s take a look at the some of the key players from the 2012-2013 playoffs who could receive inflated contracts. Nate Robinson – Guard – Chicago Bulls Has anyone forgotten Nate’s Playoff campaign? He averaged 17 points on 50 percent shooting and 3.6 assists vs Brooklyn, including 34 points in a crucial Game 4 win. What about 15 points, 5.6 assists, four rebounds and two three-pointers per game vs. Miami, including that amazing Game 1 where he grabbed the Bulls by the horns and dropped 27 points and nine assists in the road win. With Derrick Rose back from his knee reconstruction and Kirk Hinrich and Marquis Teague still on the roster, it’s highly likely Robinson won’t be in a Bulls uniform next season. Look for a team like Dallas, with salary cap space and the need for a PG to make a significant offer. Jarrett Jack – Guard – Golden State Warriors Jack, who finished third in Sixth Man of the Year voting, was a crucial part of the Warriors success this season and through the playoffs. Jack averaged 17 points, 4.4 rebounds and 4.7 assists across the series against Denver and San Antonio. Golden State will be determined to keep Jack as their ‘off the bench spark’ and more than capable replacement when Curry injures his ankles again. With news that fellow Warrior, Carl Landry, will test free agency, Golden State will be able to increase their offer to keep Jack. Andre Iguodala – Forward – Denver Nuggets Iguodala will reportedly opt out of his final year $15.9 million contract with Denver after averaging at least 12 points, five rebounds and five assists for his fifth consecutive season. In the Golden State playoff series he averaged 18 points, 8 rebounds, 5.3 assists, two steals and 2.3 three-pointers. In the prime of his career and one of the premier wing defenders in the game, Iguodala will be a key signing for any team with significant salary cap space available. Chris Andersen – Forward – Miami Heat Miami signed Andersen on two 10 day contracts before signing him for the remainder of the season on February 8th 2013. A little over four months later, Andersen became an NBA Champion for the first time. Andersen played an important role off the bench against Roy Hibbert in the Eastern Conference Finals. He shot 15-15 from the field across games 1-5, but it was his defensive rebounding and shot blocking presence which contributed to Miami’s series win. At 34 years of age, Andersen won’t receive a massive contract, but on the back of his performances there will be a team who tries to lure him away from Miami. Tiago Splitter – Center – San Antonio Spurs Splitter was selected by San Antonio with pick 28 in the 2007 draft. However, Splitter stayed and played in the Spanish League for the following two seasons before officially signing with the Spurs in July 2010. Splitter’s three-year deal was reportedly worth around $11 million and he’s now coming off his most productive season starting 58 games averaging 10.3 points on 56 percent shooting and 6.4 rebounds in 24 minutes. With a lack of solid big men in the league, will Splitter choose a big contract or stay with the Spurs and try to win a Championship? - What do you think? Where will these guys land?