Once again the Sixers find themselves facing a crucial offseason. What are some of the biggest decisions Darly Morey is facing?
It is said almost every year, “This offseason is the most important offseason in recent years!” Not to be cliché, but this offseason actually feels like it. It feels like the 76ers are at a true crossroads, and some huge decisions will be made that will determine the short- and long-term trajectory of this team.
Will the Sixers Offer Joel Embiid a “Super-Max” Extension, and will he sign it?
Joel Embiid still has two years left on his current contract, but after being selected to the All-NBA second team, he is eligible to receive a “super-max” extension. The extension would be for four years and could be worth up to $190 million. Some would say it’s risky due to Embiid’s injury history, but honestly, he’s earned it.
If it wasn’t for his bone bruise in March, Joel Embiid would have likely won his first MVP award. He led the charge for the Sixers as they marched towards the top seed in the eastern conference. Will Daryl Morey offer Embiid the “super-max”?
Likely, but the true question is whether Joel Embiid will sign it. Embiid loves it here in Philadelphia, and he is the heart and soul of this team. Embiid may sign an extension but he may also wait until there is a resolution with the Ben Simmons drama. As we could see after the Game 7 loss, Embiid is fed up with Simmons and his offensive deficiencies. Embiid will likely wait until the front office fully commits to him and builds the best team around him.
Trading Ben Simmons
This has been a major topic of discussion, but we are at a point where it seems like all parties involved need to move on. Simmons needs a change of scenery, and the Sixers need to move on from him. Ben Simmons is still a very good player, but he will just have to blossom somewhere else.
If he does not improve offensively, he cannot continue to hold this team back. With Embiid’s injury history, the window is short, and the team needs to capitalize. We don’t know if Simmons will be here to start the season or not, but Morey has a pretty big decision to make.
Sixers Free Agents
The Sixers have some important free-agent decisions to make this offseason. The most important free agent is Danny Green. Green was a very good fit on this roster due to his defense and 3-point shooting. Green was not only a good 3-point shooter, but he was a volume shooter as well. He shot 40% just over 6 attempts a game. Besides a few bad assignments (Trae Young/James Harden), Green held his own on the defensive end.
He is a hot commodity due to his leadership and shooting abilities and will command a market this offseason. The Sixers have Green’s bird rights and can offer him the most money and still go over the salary cap. Not only would he be a great player to bring back to the roster, but his salary could also be used at a later date as salary filler if Morey and Brand needed to make a move to improve the roster. The Sixers should push to bring him back.
Dwight Howard had some up and down moments this season but was the best backup center the Sixers have had for Embiid in years. Sure, Dwight was good for a technical foul and two offensive fouls a game, but he showed energy and hustle. Dwight averaged 8.4 rpg off the bench, which is no small feat. Simmons/Howard lineups were terrible during the year and really showed to be a problem in the playoffs. There’s a chance that Morey and the team would be interested in bringing Howard back, but that would depend on if Simmons returns to the team.
Furkan Korkmaz is an interesting situation. Korkmaz has improved every year and this year made a jump offensively and defensively. Coach Doc Rivers allowed Furkan to handle the ball more, and he got a lot better with shot creation. Korkmaz will likely command a contract around $10-12 million total, and the Sixers may not be willing to pay that. Many have grown to become a fan of Korkmaz and would love to see him back. The front office may not see the value of keeping him with other more well-rounded veterans available.
It seems like the last few years, all eyes have been on the Sixers in the offseason. First, the Jimmy Butler/Tobias Harris/Al Horford summer. Next, it was the summer to fix all the mistakes of the previous summer. Now, it’s time for the Sixers to go all in this summer, and Morey, Brand, and the crew have some tough decisions to make.