UFAs Who Will Cost Too Much to Poach: Montrezl Harrell, Los Angeles Clippers
Montrezl Harrell exists in a weird space. He's a high-impact player for one of the best teams in the league, but it isn't quite clear whether he's indispensable or how well his skill set will translate to a different situation.
His functional relentlessness is completely scalable. Whichever team signs him will be acquiring his limitless motor. That's part of why you pay him. He'll outwork pretty much everyone, seamlessly fit within different pick-and-roll combinations, bruise his way to buckets in the post and disarm defenses with head-down off-the-dribble attacks from the perimeter.
Giannis Antetokounmpo and Nikola Jokic are the only other players averaging more than 18 points while shooting better than 59 percent on twos. Harrell's scoring opportunities are easier, but damn. Any team with money and a need up front (Charlotte) or addiction to bigs (New York) can come up with enough reasons to throw the bag at him.
And yet, not all rosters are built to capitalize on what Harrell does best. His offensive work ethic largely requires an elite—or semi-elite—playmaker. Without three-point range, he's a non-starter at power forward. Then again, certain squads cannot roll out a 6'7" center who doesn't dominate the glass or thrive as a primary backline defender without thinking twice.
Paying him won't be hard for the Clippers to reconcile. They know he fits, and unless they have another big-man acquisition in the works, he's more matchup-proof than Ivica Zubac (albeit not as much as JaMychal Green). Other teams don't have that informational luxury. And for what it'll cost to get him out of Hollywood—figure at least $17 million annually—that money should be spent on someone who's more of a sure thing.