The first move of free agency for the Sixers was re-signing G/F Furkan Korkmaz to a 3-year deal worth $15m. Many thought Korkmaz would walk and sign a deal with another team due to the Sixers being priced out of his market. Shooting is at a premium in the NBA and projections had his value at about 9 million dollars per year. As free agency began, there were reports that Korkmaz and the Cleveland Cavs had mutual interest but ultimately, he returned to the blue and white.
The return of Korkmaz brings back the shooting and spacing this team needs around Joel Embiid and possibly Ben Simmons. Furkan is one of the few Sixers that has a quick trigger from beyond the arc. He has complete confidence in his shooting and game and that is something this team truly needs. He averaged 9 ppg off the bench on just about 5 3-pointers attempted a game, which was second on the team to Danny Green. Korkmaz has also improved every year he has been with the team and made a huge jump this past season with Doc Rivers at the helm. He improved his shot creation, play making and defense.
Korkmaz’s path to this moment has been one that has taken many turns. He went from a first round pick that didn’t play, to requesting a trade, to resigning on a minimum deal last season. He worked hard to stay in the rotation last season. He shot his way out of the doghouse mid-season when Doc Rivers told the media that rookie Isaiah Joe would be taking his place in the rotation.
Daryl Morey and Elton Brand found great value with this deal and prioritized 3-point shooting just in case Danny Green decides to sign with another team. Korkmaz is probably elated to be back in a place he calls his true home.
Welcome back and Pop the Kork!
Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire