Paul Reed “Out the Mud” with New Sixers Contract

COLLEGE BASKETBALL: MAR 11 Big East Tournament – DePaul v Xavier
NEW YORK, NY – MARCH 11: DePaul Blue Demons forward Paul Reed (4) during the second half of the Big East tournament first round game between the DePaul Blue Demons and Xavier Musketeers on March 11, 2020 at Madison Square Garden in New York, NY (Photo by John Jones/Icon Sportswire)

The Sixers showed faith in Paul Reed by converting his contract to a full deal and extending him for three more years following this season.

There have been high hopes for Paul Reed since the Sixers selected him with the 58th overall pick in last year’s draft. Second-round picks are often looked at as a longshot to make NBA rosters. The Sixers, however, showed their faith in the DePaul product and signed him to a two-way contract for the season.

Reed has been limited in his NBA minutes so far. Averaging just 2.8 points and 1.9 rebounds in 8.3 minutes per game, Bball Paul has gotten in just 10 total games with the Philadelphia 76ers. Due to his two-way contract, Reed also shared time in the G-League bubble where he fully showed his skillset.

Ranking third in the G-league in scoring, Paul Reed poured in 22.3 points per game. He also added 11.8 rebounds, 2.3 assists, 1.9 steals, and 1.8 blocks. The 6’9 forward shot 58.8% from the field and 44.4% from beyond the three-point arc. His time in the G-league bubble helped his confidence grow, increased his NBA hopes, and led Reed to become the third player in league history to win MVP and Rookie of the Year in the same season.

The Sixers recently rewarded Reed’s impressive effort in the G-league by extending him a three-year contract and converting his current two-way deal to a spot on the 15-man roster. The deal is for the league minimum, and the next two seasons are not guaranteed. For Paul Reed, this immediately increases his pay on the season by roughly double and provides job support for a guy who was looked at as a fringe NBA player by many around the league.

For the Sixers, the deal is also a massive win. It is an ultimate low-risk, high-reward deal. If Daryl Morey and the rest of the front office decide Bball Paul is not capable of being a contributing member of the 15-man roster, they can walk away without leaving money on the table. However, Reed has a chance to greatly outperform his pay wage and will now be with the team for two more years.

This was a similar deal that was seen with Shake Milton. After being a second-round pick in 2018, Milton was also given a two-way contract and spent the bulk of his time with the Delaware Blue Coats. The 24.9 points, 4.9 rebounds, and 4.9 assists that Shake averaged in the G-league were enough to give hope of his fit with the Sixers, and he was given an extension.

Shake was signed to a deal that started with a base salary of $1.4 million per year and guaranteed Milton to stay with the Sixers at least through 2022-23. After his meteoritic rise, Shake proved his worth to the Sixers and secured a long-term role with the team. Despite having the 11th highest paid contract on the team, Shake is averaging 13.7 points and 3.1 assists in his sixth-man role.

While Shake showed more polish in his game than has been seen with Paul Reed to this point, this deal is structured similarly with the potential for it to work out significantly in the Sixers’ favor. Reed has been forced to play mainly at center since his return to the NBA, largely due to the shortage of big men in the wake of the Joel Embiid injury and Tony Bradley trade.

This is not the most natural role for Reed, and the hopes are for him to fill more of a stretch four type role as his career progresses. His exciting athleticism and raw ability are intriguing. Finding production on the roster for a minimum deal is the type of move that can make the difference for filling out a roster.

This is especially important considering that roughly $95 million of the salary cap is tied up in the trio of Joel EmbiidBen Simmons, and Tobias Harris. The youthful energy and effort out of Reed may prove to outperform its cost show to be a worthy gamble by Daryl Morey.