Since the start of free agency on Monday night, teams have wasted little time making improvements. Less than 48 hours later and the free-agent market is almost completely dried up.
Surveying the NBA landscape following this massive wave of signings and multiple Eastern Conference teams have bolstered their roster ahead of next season. Whether it was tiny moves or big splashes, the East has gotten deeper.
Arguably the biggest team to go all-in is the Miami Heat. After being on the Kyle Lowry trail since the trade deadline last season, the All-Star point guard has made his way to South beach. Along with swinging a deal for Lowry, Pat Riley swooped in and pouched PJ Tucker from the defending champion Milwaukee Bucks.
The Chicago Bulls are another team that made some big moves with their focus set on getting back to the postseason. In addition to acquiring Lonzo Ball, Chicago also worked out a sing-and-trade with San Antonio for DeMar DeRozan. They are sure to be a team to shoot up the standings moving forward.
Even with having so much money tied into their big three, the Brooklyn Nets found a way to get better. First, they retained Blake Griffin and then signed longtime Spurs guard Patty Mills to a two-year deal. Bringing in a championship-winning vet like Mills is a drastic upgrade for the Nets' second unit.
For some time, the Eastern Conference has been viewed as the "easier path" to the NBA finals. That is not going to be the case for the foreseeable future.
The Sixers will have their work cut out for them if they want to remain atop the East. Along with trying to keep up with Brooklyn and Milwaukee, teams are slowly creeping up behind them.
Between Miami and Chicago stacking up, playoff teams who retained their cores (Bucks, Nets, Hawks), the East is going to be super competitive.
Despite only making lateral moves so far in free agency, the Sixers should still view themselves near the top of the conference. How things play out with Ben Simmons will be a better indicator of where they stand among their peers.
Last season, there were only 2-3 realistic contenders in the East. That number might increase after some of these free-agent acquisitions.
Kevin McCormick covers the Philadelphia 76ers for South Jersey's 97.3 ESPN and Sports Illustrated. You can follow him on Twitter: @KevinMcCNBA.