Time to Show Some Appreciation For Sixers’ Sniper Furkan Korkmaz

LOS ANGELES, CA – MARCH 01: Philadelphia 76ers Forward Furkan Korkmaz (30) drives to the basket during a NBA game between the Philadelphia 76ers and the Los Angeles Clippers on March 1, 2020 at STAPLES Center in Los Angeles, CA. (Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire)

Furkan Korkmaz has been a bright spot on this Sixers team during the early parts of this season as a long-range sniper and a high-energy player.

The Sixers’ sniper has been consistent over the team’s first 6 games and has played 19.8 minutes per game, dropping in 10.2 points per game on 41.7/34.6/92.3 shooting splits. On top of his excellent three-point shooting, “Steph Turkey” has been showing improvement in many easily seen categories.

Furkan Korkmaz is posting career highs in points per game (10.2), field goals attempted per game (8.0), free throws made per game (2.0), free throws attempted per game (2.2), free throw percentage (92.3%), and, most exciting, assists per game (3.0). The fact that Korkmaz is still improving this many aspects of his game at only age 24 is astounding.

It goes beyond just statistics as well. Furkan Korkmaz has been consistently improving in all aspects of his game, not just on offense. Over the past few seasons, Furkan has gone from one of the worst defenders in the league to a serviceable player who consistently makes an effort.

At this moment, Furkan Korkmaz is posting a career-high Player Efficiency Rating (PER) as well with a score of 17.5, where the league average is 15 according to Basketball-Reference. For reference, that is just under the PER that Tobias Harris had last year (20.0). Furkan also has a True Shooting Percentage (TS%) of 56.8%.

Furkan Korkmaz has long been the type of player who develops a cult following for simply being supremely interesting. However, with this explosion of efficiency and progression, he is proving himself as an NBA talent to people beyond the Sixers fanbase. This improvement is astounding for Furkan and for the Philadelphia 76ers organization, who at one time declined his team option on his rookie scale contract.

Korkmaz went from hardly playing for the Sixers and having his team option declined, to requesting a trade, to almost being forced to go back and play in Turkey, to barely grabbing on as the 15th man, to finally getting a chance to show his amazing progression.

Furkan resigned with the 76ers this offseason after speaking about how he wished to return to Philadelphia on a three-year $15 million contract. So far this season, Furkan has proved himself worthy of this contract and is making a case for one of the best value contracts for a non-rookie contract in the league.