DARREN COLLISON, CHRIS KAMAN AND ELTON BRAND
Williams was Dallas's top off-season target, but Collison (acquired in a trade with the Pacers), Kaman (a free agent from New Orleans) and Brand (amnestied by the 76ers) aren't bad consolation prizes. Collison and Kaman beef up a starting lineup that got limited scoring from the point guard and center positions last season (Jason Kidd and Brendan Haywood averaged a combined 11.4 points per game), while Brand should thrive on the second unit. More importantly, all three come off the books next summer, when Chris Paul and Dwight Howard could be free agents.
The Raptors whiffed on Nash but stole a younger, cheaper alternative in Lowry, whom they got from the Rockets for a future first-round pick. Lowry is a bulldog defender who averaged a career-high 14.3 points last season. With Lowry on board, Toronto, which jumped from 30th in defensive efficiency in 2010--11 to 12th last season under rookie coach Dwane Casey, should be even stingier next season.
Ray Allen's destination stung Boston more than his departure. That's because the 34-year-old Terry, a free-agent pickup from the Mavs, is a better fit. A reserve since 2007—and the NBA's Sixth Man of the Year in '09—Terry will have no problem coming off the bench behind third-year guard Avery Bradley, whose emergence knocked Allen out of the starting lineup and prompted the Celtics to shop the veteran. And with 87 playoff games and an NBA title on his résumé, Terry will embrace Boston's championship-or-bust attitude.
Maintaining continuity is a big key for the Thunder, so locking up Brooks, who has coached every game since the franchise moved to Oklahoma City in 2008, was essential. (He signed a four-year, $16 million deal last month.) Brooks has developed a strong bond with the players ("They would run through a wall for him," said a team source) and has grown with a group that has advanced from the first round to the conference finals to the NBA Finals over the last three seasons. Losing Brooks—Portland and Orlando were interested—would have been a major setback for the Thunder.