Most impactful free-agent signings of a century … in each sport

LeBron James’ 2010 preference to take his talents to South Beach and form a Big Three with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh led to dual NBA championships. With LeBron once again on a market, we take a demeanour during some of a other free-agent signings given 2000 that have generated a signnificant impact.


Kevin Durant (Golden State Warriors, 2016)

Background: Durant determined himself as a second-best actor in a NBA behind LeBron James, winning an MVP endowment in 2014 and teaming adult with Russell Westbrook and James Harden in Oklahoma City to take a Thunder to a 2012 NBA Finals, where they mislaid to a Heat. In 2016, a Thunder blew a 3-1 lead in a Western Conference finals to a Warriors, and after that summer, Durant left OKC for Golden State.

Contract: Durant sealed a two-year, $54.3 million agreement after being recruited by a Warriors in 2016.

Aftermath: There was no interlude a 2016-2017 Warriors, as Durant assimilated army with Stephen Curry, Draymond Green and Klay Thompson to lead a Warriors to a initial of back-to-back titles — and back-to-back Finals MVPs for Durant.

LeBron James (Miami Heat, 2010)

Background: James was entrance off a successful 7 seasons in Cleveland to start his career, yet with no titles to uncover for a superstar, he took his talents to South Beach in his much-hyped “decision,” fasten army in a routine with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh on a Miami Heat.

Contract: James was acquired by a sign-and-trade understanding in a summer of 2010 and sealed for 6 years and $110.1 million, with an early-termination choice after a fourth season.

Aftermath: James won dual titles and finished 4 uninterrupted NBA Finals appearances in his 4 seasons with a Heat, cementing his bequest as a league’s tip player. Meanwhile, in Cleveland, James took a lot of feverishness (no joke intended) for withdrawal his hometown team, and a Cavs regressed to lottery standing following a King’s departure. The Heat enjoyed James’ 4 seasons in Miami before he rejoined a Cavs in 2014.

LeBron James (Cleveland Cavaliers, 2014)

Background: In 2010, James left his hometown Cavs for a possibility during championships with a Heat. He won dual in 4 years, and in 2014, motionless to lapse home to Cleveland for a possibility during winning a championship with a Cavs. Kevin Love assimilated him, teaming adult with budding star Kyrie Irving in a process.

Contract: James sealed a two-year, $42.1 million understanding in 2014, returning to Cleveland.

Aftermath: It took dual seasons, yet James delivered on his idea of bringing a pretension behind home, heading a Cavs to an NBA championship in 2016. From a 2014-15 deteriorate by this past season, he took Cleveland to 4 true NBA Finals.

Steve Nash (Phoenix Suns, 2004)

Background: The indicate ensure went from All-Star turn in Dallas to being a MVP in Phoenix — fasten a Suns group that shone in manager Mike D’Antoni’s fast-paced descent system, that was, during a time, revolutionary.

Contract: Nash sealed a six-year package in 2004 value some-more than $65 million — with a sixth deteriorate partially guaranteed and a Suns holding a group choice for a full volume in Year 6.

Aftermath: Nash won back-to-back MVP awards in 2005 and 2006 while heading a Suns to good regular-season success — yet never a NBA Finals. Nash still goes down as one of a biggest indicate guards of all time.

Chris Bosh (Heat, 2010)

Background: Bosh was a man in Toronto, a long-lived All-Star who could never utterly get a Raptors distant in postseason play. So he motionless to join LeBron James in Miami, teaming adult with Dwyane Wade to form a Heat’s Big Three.

Contract: Bosh was acquired by a sign-and-trade in a summer of 2010 and sealed with a Heat for 6 years and $110.1 million, with an early-termination choice after a fourth season.

Aftermath: Bosh lived adult to his All-Star standing and played a pivotal purpose in a Heat’s run to 4 uninterrupted NBA Finals appearances and dual titles, including a purchase retard in a 2013 Finals feat over a San Antonio Spurs.


Drew Brees (New Orleans Saints, 2006)

Background: Brees was during a crossroads when he entered giveaway group after a 2005 season. He suffered a ripped labrum in a deteriorate culmination with a Chargers, who were already formulation on replacing him with 2004 first-round collect Philip Rivers. So a marketplace for Brees was a bit tenuous, quite after he went by arthroscopic medicine after a deteriorate ended.

Contract: The Saints and Dolphins emerged as front-runners for Brees, and it looked for a while as yet he would be personification in Miami. The Dolphins were wavering about Brees’ shoulder, that authorised a Saints to swoop in and pointer him to a six-year, $60 million deal.

Aftermath: Brees jelled with Saints manager Sean Payton off a bat and has taken off from there, going from a plain starter for a Chargers to a surefire Hall of Famer who’s 1,495 yards brief of being a many inclusive passer in NFL history. Brees has thrown for 58,907 of his 70,445 yards in New Orleans and 408 and 488 of his touchdown passes. Brees has played in 10 Pro Bowls and won a Super Bowl MVP in heading a Saints to a Super Bowl XLIV pretension after a 2009 season.

Nick Foles (Philadelphia Eagles, 2017)

Background: Foles was a third-round breeze collect by a Eagles in 2012 and eventually supplanted Michael Vick as a starter. He flourished underneath Chip Kelly in 2013, going to a Pro Bowl after throwing 27 touchdown passes to dual interceptions, yet injuries and disproportionate play in 2014 forced a trade to a Rams, where he was benched in 2015 due to turnovers. He was a giveaway representative again in 2017 after spending 2016 as a backup with a Chiefs.

Contract: There weren’t any starting-quarterback jobs on a open marketplace so Foles returned to Philadelphia, signing a two-year, $11 million agreement with $7 million guaranteed to offer as a backup to second-year quarterback Carson Wentz.

Aftermath: Foles was a witness for many of 2017, as Wentz led a Eagles to a 10-2 record before being harmed in Week 14 opposite a Rams. Foles led Philly to a Week 14 feat yet struggled in a final 3 games of a unchanging season. The backup held glow in a playoffs, heading a Eagles to their initial NFL pretension in 57 years with an MVP opening opposite a Patriots, throwing for 373 yards and 3 touchdowns and throwing another TD pass in Super Bowl LII.

Peyton Manning (Denver Broncos, 2012)

Background: Manning was already a Hall of Famer before apropos a giveaway representative after a 2011 season, as he led a Colts to dual Super Bowl appearances, one Super Bowl pretension and threw for for 54,828 yards and 399 touchdowns from 1998-2010. But neck medicine caused him to skip a 2011 season. With Manning’s destiny in doubt, a Colts motionless to dedicate a No. 1 collect in a 2012 breeze to his inheritor and finished him a giveaway agent.

Contract: Manning’s damage didn’t shock off other teams, as a brood of suitors wanted to pointer a destiny Hall of Famer. While a Titans, Dolphins and Cardinals all finished clever bids to pointer Manning, he motionless to pointer a five-year, $96 million agreement with a Broncos.

Aftermath: Manning got healthy in time for a 2012 deteriorate and was means to finish his exquisite career on his terms with a four-year army in Denver. Manning set single-season NFL annals for flitting yards (5,477) and flitting touchdowns (55) during a 2013 deteriorate in that he won a MVP and led a Broncos to a Super Bowl. Manning finished his career as a all-time personality in flitting yards (71,940) and flitting touchdowns (539) and with a championship in Super Bowl 50.

Shannon Sharpe (Baltimore Ravens, 2000)

Background: Sharpe was John Elway’s confidence sweeping during his 10 seasons in Denver, creation 7 Pro Bowls, notching 3 1,000-yard seasons and assisting a Broncos win dual Super Bowls. But Sharpe’s 1999 deteriorate was cut brief in Week 5 after a All-Pro parsimonious finish suffered a fractured collarbone.

Contract: With his damage and advancing age (Sharpe incited 32 before a 2000 season), a Broncos weren’t peaceful to mangle a bank for Sharpe. The Ravens took advantage, signing Sharpe to a four-year, $13.8 million agreement with a $4.5 million signing bonus.

Aftermath: Sharpe was not usually a Ravens’ many inclusive receiving threat, yet also came adult large during Baltimore’s run to a Super Bowl XXXV championship, throwing a 96-yard touchdown pass in a AFC pretension diversion opposite a Raiders and adding a 58-yard measure opposite a Broncos in a wild-card game. He finished a Pro Bowl in 2001 before going behind to Denver for dual some-more seasons. Sharpe was inducted into a Hall of Fame in 2011.

Charles Woodson (Green Bay Packers, 2006)

Background: After winning a Heisman Trophy during Michigan, Woodson immediately became one of a tip cornerbacks on entering a NFL in 1998, creation a Pro Bowl in his initial 4 seasons and heading a Raiders to a Super Bowl in 2002. But leg injuries knocked him out of 13 games total in 2004 and 2005, and a rebuilding Oakland classification let him walk.

Contract: The damaged leg he suffered in 2005 vexed a marketplace for Woodson, who went unsigned and mostly unpursued during a initial dual months of giveaway agency. With few teams to select from, Woodson sealed an incentive-laden, seven-year understanding with a Packers.

Aftermath: While Woodson primarily balked during going to Green Bay, his 7 seasons there got his career behind on lane and paved a approach to what will expected be a mark in a Hall of Fame. He intercepted 38 passes as a Packer (returning 9 for touchdowns) and also combined 11.5 sacks as he transitioned from outward dilemma to nickel to giveaway safety. Woodson finished 4 Pro Bowls with a Packers, was a 2009 Defensive Player of a Year and helped lead a approach to a Super Bowl XLV pretension after a 2010 season.


David Ortiz (Red Sox, 2003)

Background: The Red Sox were entrance off their third uninterrupted deteriorate though a playoff berth when they sealed a comparatively little-known initial baseman who had been expelled by a Twins in a pierce to save tip space.

Contract: Red Sox ubiquitous manager Theo Epstein sealed Ortiz to a one-year, non-guaranteed agreement in 2003 that would compensate him $1.25 million if he finished a team.

Aftermath: Ortiz strike 31 home runs and gathering in 101 runs in his initial year in Boston. The Red Sox would tumble to a Yankees in a American League Championship Series in 7 games yet would go on to win a World Series a following season, dispatching a Yankees in a routine and finale an 86-year championship drought. Ortiz became one of a many purchase hitters in ball and won 3 World Series titles while garnering 10 All-Star selections in Boston. Big Papi strike 483 of his 541 career home runs with a Red Sox — not bad for that initial $1.25 million investment.

Manny Ramirez (Boston Red Sox, 2001)

Background: Ramirez had already determined himself as one of a best hitters in a diversion when he left Cleveland to join a Red Sox in 2001. Ramirez had posted 5 100-RBI seasons with a Indians, including a beast 1999 during that he put adult 44 home runs and 165 RBIs.

Contract: Ramirez concluded to an eight-year, $160 million agreement before a 2001 season, creation him a second-highest-paid actor in a fasten behind Alex Rodriguez.

Aftermath: Ramirez was a pivotal spoke for a curse-busting Red Sox teams, averaging 39 home runs and 118 RBIs from 2001-06. Ramirez won 6 true Silver Slugger awards after fasten Boston and finished 8 uninterrupted All-Star teams.

Vladimir Guerrero (Anaheim Angels, 2004)

Background: Vladimir Guerrero detonate onto a stage in 1998 with a Expos, attack .324 with 38 home runs and 109 RBIs, yet was let go by a cash-strapped authorization after a 2003 season. In his final 6 seasons in Montreal, he averaged 37 homers per season.

Contract: Entering his age-29 season, Guerrero, a career .323 hitter during a time, sealed a five-year understanding with a Angels in 2004.

Aftermath: It didn’t take prolonged for Guerrero to make his participation felt in Southern California. In his initial deteriorate with a Angels, Guerrero strike .337 with 39 home runs, 126 RBIs, 124 runs and was named AL MVP. Guerrero strike over .300 and gathering in during slightest 100 runs in any of his initial 4 seasons with a Angels.

Ivan Rodriguez (Detroit Tigers, 2004)

Background: Pudge spent 12 seasons with a Rangers after entrance adult as a teen before fasten a Marlins in 2003, assisting Florida win a World Series that season. Rodriguez had amassed 10 All-Star selections, 10 Gold Gloves and an MVP before signing with a Tigers in 2004.

Contract: Rodriguez sealed a four-year, $40 million agreement with a Tigers in 2004, withdrawal a World Series champion to join a group that had usually set an American League record for waste in a season.

Aftermath: Pudge went to 4 true All-Star games after fasten a Tigers and combined 3 some-more Gold Gloves to his collection. He was partial of a supernatural turnaround that saw Detroit strech a World Series in 2006, where it mislaid in 5 games to a Cardinals.

Max Scherzer (Washington Nationals, 2015)

Background: After entrance adult with Arizona, Scherzer was traded to a Tigers before a 2010 season. He won 82 games over 5 seasons with Detroit and prisoner a American League Cy Young Award in 2013.

Contract: Scherzer assimilated a Nationals on a seven-year, $210 million understanding in 2015.

Aftermath: Scherzer has finished a All-Star group any year given fasten a Nationals and won back-to-back Cy Young Awards in 2016 and 2017. The National League’s premier strikeout pitcher, Scherzer has punched out during slightest 268 batters in any of his initial 3 full seasons in Washington and has determined himself as one of a many reliable, widespread pitchers in a game.


Brett Hull (Detroit Red Wings, 2001)

Background: Hull chose a improved possibility to win a championship over cash. After Dallas declined his $7 million choice for 2001, Hull took reduction income to join a Stanley Cup-contending Red Wings over some-more remunerative offers from a Canadiens and Rangers.

Contract: Hull, who had scored 39 goals for Dallas in 2000-01, sealed a two-year, $9 million understanding with a Red Wings during that offseason.

Aftermath: For Hull, it was idea accomplished. He helped lead a Red Wings to a Stanley Cup pretension in 2001-02 — violence Carolina in 5 games — scoring 10 goals in a playoffs after notching 30 in a unchanging season. It was Hull’s second career Stanley Cup Finals victory.

Zdeno Chara (Boston Bruins, 2006)

Background: At a finish of a 2005-06 season, financially strapped Ottawa had to make a choice: Keep Chara or associate defenseman Wade Redden. The Senators authorised a 6-foot-9 Chara to take his disagreeable slap shot elsewhere, vouchsafing him strike giveaway agency. They’ll positively wish a mulligan on that move.

Contract: On a initial day of NHL giveaway group in 2006, a Bruins sealed Chara to a five-year, $37.5 million understanding and immediately named him a group captain.

Aftermath: Chara scored double-figure goals in 6 of his initial 7 seasons in Boston, highlighted by a Stanley Cup pretension in 2011. Chara, who won a Norris Trophy as a NHL’s tip defender in 2008-09, has turn a tighten for a Hall of Fame, helped by his longevity. At age 41, he’s still a pivotal member of a Bruins’ defense.

Marian Hossa (Chicago Blackhawks, 2009)

Background: After personification for 3 teams in 2008, Hossa was looking for fortitude during a frail mercantile time. No some-more one-year contracts for this scoring star, who in 2008-09 helped lead a Red Wings to within one diversion of capturing a Stanley Cup. He scored 40 regular-season goals and had 6 in a postseason. It was about time for a All-Star to income in as a giveaway agent.

Contract: Talk about joining — Hossa got that from a Blackhawks in 2009. The group sealed him to a whopping 12-year understanding value $62.8 million.

Aftermath: While he never came tighten to scoring 40 goals again, Hossa was value that mega-deal, assisting lead a Blackhawks to a Stanley Cup pretension in his initial deteriorate with them in 2010. They’ve also won dual some-more titles together in 2013 and 2015. During a 2014-15 season, Hossa assimilated a 1,000-point club, apropos a 80th actor in NHL story to strech a milestone.

Scott Niedermayer (Anaheim Ducks, 2005)

Background: Niedermayer helped lead a Devils to 3 Stanley Cup titles in 13 seasons, yet a star defenseman couldn’t work out a long-term understanding with group after a 2003-04 season. He chose to go to arbitration, and it was a success. Niedermayer was awarded a one-year, $7 million deal, that tied for a tip volume ever given in arbitration. But after a 2004-05 lockout, a understanding was voided and he became an unlimited giveaway agent.

Contract: A proven commodity on a open market, Niedermayer had over a dozen teams interrogation about his services on a initial day of giveaway group in 2005. But instead of holding a five-year understanding to stay with a Devils, Niedermayer sealed a four-year agreement value $6.75 million per deteriorate to join his brother, Rob, in Anaheim.

Aftermath: Instant success for Niedermayer and a Ducks ensued. In his initial deteriorate with a Ducks in 2005-06, Niedermayer was an All-Star and helped lead them to a Western Conference finals. The following season, he won his fourth career Stanley Cup climax as Anaheim set a authorization record with 48 wins. Niedermayer also available career highs of 15 goals and 54 assists in 2006-07.

Martin St. Louis (Tampa Bay Lightning, 2000)

Background: After bouncing from a minors to Calgary for several seasons, a group bought out St. Louis’ agreement after he wasn’t comparison in a 2000 NHL enlargement draft. Hard to censure a Flames — St. Louis seemed to be a border NHL actor during best after a right winger scored usually 3 goals in his initial full NHL deteriorate in 1999-2000.

Contract: While a few teams showed seductiveness in St. Louis, he sealed a $250,000 understanding with a Lightning in 2000.

Aftermath: St. Louis became a face of a Tampa Bay authorization during his 13-year run, owning a bar record for points and assists. The 5-foot-8 St. Louis, who played in 6 All-Star Games, led a Lightning to a 2004 Stanley Cup title. In that season, he won a Hart Trophy as a league’s MVP. St. Louis also owns dual Art Ross Trophies, given to a NHL points personality during a finish of a unchanging season, and 3 Lady Byng Memorial Trophies, awarded to a actor exhibiting a best sportsmanship while personification during a high level.


David Beckham (LA Galaxy, 2007)

Background: Beckham was already an general name before he arrived in Los Angeles, interjection to 3 World Cup appearances and 6 Premier League titles during Manchester United. Beckham played for Real Madrid between 2003-2007, when a afterwards 31-year-old announced he would pointer with a Galaxy and abandon Real’s agreement prolongation offer.

Contract: Initially reported to be a $250 million understanding over 5 years, in existence Beckham had sealed a five-year agreement value $32.5 million. The $250 million was a series generated formed on his intensity gain on and off a field.

Aftermath: Despite a delayed start due to damage (Beckham seemed in usually 5 games and dual starts his initial year), a midfielder drew an normal throng distance of over 37,600 fans in a year where a fasten normal was 16,770. Beckham helped lead a Galaxy to 4 postseason runs that yielded back-to-back MLS Cups in 2011 and 2012. In that time frame, he was named MLS Best XI and warranted Comeback Player of a Year. The designated actor order that brought Beckham to a U.S. by permitting teams to pointer high-profile players outward a club’s tip space is informally called a “Beckham Rule.”

Thierry Henry (New York Red Bulls, 2010)

Background: Henry’s French record of 51 general goals along with a four-year camber in that he was a Premier League’s tip scorer helped concrete his repute as one of a best. He spent his many prolific years with Arsenal before transferring to Barcelona in 2007. The Frenchman saw singular starts in what would be his final year with Barcelona, and while Henry had a year remaining on his contract, bar boss Joan Laporta suggested they were prepared to pierce on.

Contract: The Red Bulls brought Henry on as their second designated actor in a multiyear agreement that during one indicate surpassed Beckham’s and finished him a highest-paid actor in a league.

Aftermath: After Beckham, Henry was one of a vital names to arrive in a States, and scoreboards in Red Bull Arena were temporarily given with “Bienvenue Thierry Henry!” to acquire a veteran. Henry never won a pretension with a Red Bulls, yet was named to 4 All-Star teams and was a three-time Best XI selection. The captain late in 2014 as a Red Bulls’ career personality in assists, with 42.

David Villa (New York City FC, 2014)

Background: After winning a La Liga pretension in his sole deteriorate with Atletico Madrid, Villa astounded everybody when he announced he had supposed an “irresistible” offer from a group that was eventually suggested to be New York City FC. By 2014 he was already Spain’s all-time heading goalscorer, carrying scored 5 goals in a run to assistance his local nation constraint a 2010 World Cup.

Contract: Villa was acquired on a giveaway send from Atletico Madrid and was a initial actor to pointer with New York after it was announced as an enlargement group a year before, inking a three-year agreement for $16.8 million.

Aftermath: Villa’s MVP opening in 2016 helped New York City FC arise from a bottom third of a Eastern Conference a deteriorate before to second place. The initial actor in MLS story to measure during slightest 20 goals in uninterrupted seasons between 2016 and 2017, Villa’s 400th career idea in April, 2018 finished him one of usually 4 active players to strech that milestone. Only Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez, Cristiano Ronaldo and Zlatan Ibrahimovic have finished so.

Clint Dempsey (Seattle Sounders FC, 2013)

Background: After 3 seasons in Major League Soccer, a 2014 Rookie of a Year eliminated from a New England Revolution to Fulham and eventually, to Tottenham. In his time abroad, Dempsey became one of a many successful Americans to play opposite a Atlantic and set a goal-scoring record for a U.S. local in a Premier League. The Sounders brought Dempsey behind stateside by profitable a Spurs an MLS-record $9 million send fee.

Contract: In further to a send fee, a Sounders shelled out a reported $24 million over 4 years to make Dempsey one of a a highest-paid MLS players.

Aftermath: Dempsey’s lapse to MLS in his primary directed divided from prior narratives in a fasten where general stars came to a U.S. nearby retirement. The Sounders have reached a postseason in any of Dempsey’s seasons in Seattle, and in 2017 he finished as a team’s regular-season tip scorer with 12 goals and 5 assists before a group eventually mislaid in a MLS Cup.

Kaka (Orlando City SC, 2014)

AC Milan to play in a MLS. At this indicate his career was on a decrease — he had eliminated from Milan to Real Madrid, where his opening fell brief of expectations, afterwards changed behind to Milan after 4 years. Even so, his name helped supplement credit to a immature Orlando organization.

Contract: The club’s initial designated actor sealed a three-year agreement that paid usually over $7.1 million per season.

Aftermath: Kaka finished adult scoring Orlando’s first-ever idea in a MLS entrance to tie a diversion in additional time. He was an All-Star all 3 years and announced his retirement during a finish of a 2017 season, yet not before recording 24 goals and 22 assists in 75 unchanging deteriorate appearances.

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