Sixers Likely to Reel Fans Back in

by Marc Narducci | Jul 5, 2024
Sixers Likely to Reel Fans Back in
The 76ers fans have been a tortured group. After the forgettable process years, the Sixers have made the playoffs seven straight seasons, only to exit each one in either the first or second round.

After this year’s first round series loss to the New York Knicks, many were jumping off a bandwagon that wasn’t that crowded to begin with.

President of basketball operations Daryl Morey had a lot to do this offseason, with only four players on the roster prior to the NBA draft.

Before the NBA free agency period had been 24 hours long, the Sixers have struck in a big way and in doing so, has to be considered a contender in the Eastern Conference.

The big news came early Monday morning when ESPN reported that the Sixers had signed Los Angeles Clippers free agent forward Paul George to a four-year, $212 million contract with a player option the fourth year.

The combination of Joel Embiid, Tyrese Maxey and George, give the Sixers a formidable trio that is among the best, if not the best in the NBA.

ESPN also reported that the Sixers have re-signed swingman Kelly Oubre Jr. to a two-year $16.3 million deal. Oubre averaged 15.3 points for the Sixers last year. Other media reports also stated that the Sixers have signed center Andre Drummond and guard Eric Gordon.

This is Drummond’s second stint with the Sixers and he played well backing up Embiid the first time. Gordon shot .378 from three-point range for Phoenix last season.  

For a Sixers team that had only four players on its roster prior to the NBA draft, this is a big haul, and they are not finished.

Plus, the Sixers added two additions in the NBA draft. With the new NBA collective bargaining agreement, it’s vital that teams get production from young, i.e. cheaper players.

The Sixers selected Duke freshman guard Jared McCain with the No. 16 overall pick in the first round and UCLA sophomore center-forward Adem Bona with the 41st selection in the second round.

In his one season at Duke, McCain shot 41.4 percent from three-point range, averaging a healthy 5.8 attempts per game. He also averaged 14.3 points, 5.0 rebounds, 1.9 assists and 1.1 steals. According to NBA.com, McCain shot 42.1% on 160 catch-and-shoot 3’s. He is only 20-years-old and offers great upside. Whether McCain can contribute immediately remains to be seen, but it seems likely he will be given every chance.

Bona, who played two years at UCLA is considered a potential defensive stopper. Before the addition of Drummond, he would have been a candidate to be the main Embiid backup, but he can also play at the 4 and provide an interior defensive presence at 6-8 ¼.

There is still plenty of work to do to fill the Sixers roster, but this looks like a team that will have a chance next season in the Eastern Conference. Sure, the Boston Celtics will be favored and rightly so, but there could also be an NBA championship hangover.

The New York Knicks have improved, although they are weakest where the Sixers are strongest – at center.

Indiana has some interesting pieces, and Milwaukee is banking on running back a talented but aging team.

Still, the Sixers are doing some interesting things as their offseason has gotten off to a blazing start.

Photo: Jared McCain (left), Adem Bona (right) / Courtesy of 76ers' Twitter

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Author: Marc Narducci

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