Commentary

Three defining trends of free agency

Updated: July 6, 2009, 4:52 PM ET
By John Hollinger | ESPN.com
Charlie Villanueva, Hedo Turkoglu and Ben GordonGetty Images, AP PhotoWhat recession? Several free agents have already cashed in with big paydays.

David Lee is better than Jason Kidd, but you'd never know it from their contract talks this summer. Despite averaging a double-double while shooting 54.9 percent from the floor, Lee ultimately may be forced to take a qualifying offer to play for barely more than the biannual exception.

On the other hand, Kidd turned down a hefty offer from Lee's current employer because he got a better one from Dallas, one that would pay him about 12 times as much as Lee's qualifying offer -- which is still the only concrete one Lee is known to have received.

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