Norman Powell Opts Out; Top 3 FA Destinations

After his best season in the NBA, Norm Powell has established himself at a level that clearly out-priced his $11.6 million dollar option. He has now officially declined that option, as expected, and becomes one of the top available free agent guards this offseason. 

Yahoo's Chris Haynes says Powell will have a number of suitors, not the least of which the Portland Trail Blazers, who traded for Powell from the Toronto Raptors in exchange for Gary Trent Jr.

Powell averaged 18.5 points per game this past season, while shooting 41% from the three-point line. As per Zach Lowe, league sources expect Powell to be able to command $20 million+ per season as a free agent. Here's a breakdown of the most likely destinations:

1. Portland Trail Blazers

The Blazers traded a young up-and-comer in Gary Trent Jr. to get Powell, so they're not likely to let him walk and end up with nothing. They were very happy with Powell's energy, shooting, aggressiveness and defense. And that's all while playing out of position at the 3. 

John Hollinger says it's "strongly suspected" that the Blazers will go all out to re-sign Powell, even if they have to go into the luxury tax to do it. 

2. Dallas Mavericks

A league source has indicated that the Mavs are interested in adding Powell's scoring to their mix, particularly if they lose Tim Hardaway Jr. to free agency.

The Mavs would have $23 million in cap room if Hardaway walks and they renounce center Willie Cauley-Stein.

3. Miami Heat

This is another team that sources have suggested will go after Powell. A lot of this, though, depends on the future of Heat restricted free agents Kendrick Nunn and Duncan Robinson. If they both bolt, the Heat will be desperate for a scorer of Powell's pedigree.

One other darkhorse candidate could be the New York Knicks, as, according to one report, coach Tom Thibodeau is an admirer of Powell. 

Toronto Raptors fans might be wondering why their team isn't necessarily in the mix to bring Powell back into the fold. While a reunion would be heartwarming, the reality is that the reason they dealt him at the trade deadline is because they were scared off by what would ultimately be his $20 million multi-year asking price in free agency. 

The ball on this one is definitely in the Trail Blazers' court. 

Photo Credit: Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports