July 02, 2019
UPDATE [6:10 p.m.] — In addition to bringing back James Ennis, the Sixers have also agreed to a four-year contract with Shake Milton, per Kyle Neubeck:
The Sixers are signing Shake Milton to a four-year contract using their remaining salary-cap room, I am told.— Kyle Neubeck (@KyleNeubeck) July 2, 2019
That appears to do it for Sixers free agency, as the team plans on using the rest salary cap space on the Milton deal.
UPDATE [5:30 p.m] — After we reported earlier that the Sixers had a lot less cap space than we initially thought, Philly appears to have spent it on James Ennis (though the details are still being ascertained), the reserve winger who was arguably the best off the Philly bench last season.
Free agent James Ennis has agreed to a two-year, $4.1M deal to return to Philadelphia, with second-year player option, league sources tell @TheAthleticNBA @Stadium. Ennis turned down more salary from multiple teams to return to a championship contender.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) July 2, 2019
According to Kyle Neubeck, Ennis rejoins the Sixers on a minimum deal, with a player option for Year 2.
James Ennis, who @ShamsCharania first reported was back in Philly on a two-year deal, is on a minimum contract with a player option for year two, per source. Took less $ to help compete for a title this year.— Kyle Neubeck (@KyleNeubeck) July 2, 2019
After losing Jimmy Butler to Miami, it is nice to see a player value winning, and see Philadelphia as the place for it. We'll update you on the Sixers current salary cap situation once we get all the info on the Ennis deal.
UPDATE [1:05 p.m.] — The Sixers have reportedly offered Ben Simmons a five-year max contract worth $168 million. According to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski, the Sixers and Simmons' agent, Rich Paul, are expected to hammer out the details and get the deal done.
Philadelphia has offered a five-year, $168M maximum contract extension to Ben Simmons and the Sixers and agent Rich Paul are expected to work through the details toward an eventual agreement, league sources tell ESPN.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) July 2, 2019
That's great news for Sixers fans — and proves all those people who thought he was going to leave for Los Angeles wrong.
“BeN iS gOinG tO L.a. FiRsT cHanCe hE gOT.”— Eric Whatever Von Bro Dude (@EJF_215) July 2, 2019
Stay tuned for more...
UPDATE [12:50 p.m.] — According to PhillyVoice's Kyle Neubeck, the Sixers don't have as much money to work with as everyone thought, thanks to the structure of Al Horford's contract. Although the reported number was $7.7 million remaining in cap space, the real number is actually closer to $2.2 million.
Sources — while public accounting has suggested the Sixers have roughly $7.7 million left in cap space, PhillyVoice has learned Al Horford's contract structure leaves them with roughly $2.2 million in space this summer https://t.co/wnsOzv5Us6— Kyle Neubeck (@KyleNeubeck) July 2, 2019
That's obviously not great news for Sixers fans who were hoping the team would add players worth more than a league minimum contract. Now, however, that doesn't appear to be the case. You can read Kyle's full story here.
As NBA free agency heads into its third day, there are still some big moves that need to be made — for example, where is Kawhi Leonard going to sign?
But when it comes to the Sixers, all the big moves are likely done after the team re-signed Tobias Harris, added Al Horford, agreed to sign-and-trade Jimmy Butler to the Heat, and lost JJ Redick to the Pelicans in the opening hours of free agency. And that leaves the Sixers with their core set, but still in need of some bench depth that can play a crucial role once teams get into the later part of the NBA season.
On Monday night, the Sixers added backup big man Kyle O'Quinn, who should be a nice fit backing up Joel Embiid and Horford down low, and it only cost them the minimum. That leaves Elton Brand and Co. with just about $7.7 million (actually, it's $2.2 million) in salary cap space and two real holes left to fill.
First, the team needs a backup point guard, something that wouldn't have been an issue had they not been fleeced by Boston on draft night, giving up the 34th overall pick that was used to draft Purdue's Carsen Edwards. Unfortunately, that did happen, and now the Sixers will need to act fast before there's no one left on the market.
The team could opt to run it back with T.J. McConnell, but, if they decide to look elsewhere, one name that's popped up for Philly recently is Quinn Cook.
I left him out of my targets piece earlier discussing the RFA guards, but Philly should be exploring something with Quinn Cook https://t.co/YMpv44kOCU— Kyle Neubeck (@KyleNeubeck) July 2, 2019
Cook is a restricted free agent with the Warriors, who likely won't be able to match an offer sheet should the Sixers make one. Other names that PhillyVoice's Kyle Neubeck brought up on Monday as possible guard depth include, for better or worse, Emmanuel Mudiay, Jeremy Lin, Tyus Jones, Delon Wright, Raul Neto, and Rajon Rondo.
Beyond a backup point guard, the Sixers also need some wing shooting. James Ennis, who played well for the Sixers in the playoffs this past season, would be the #RunItBack option, while other options include Thabo Sefolosha, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Justin Holiday and Kyle Korver.
Sure, there's nothing spectacular here, but that's probably also what Sixers fans were thinking when the team acquired Mike Scott last season, and now there are people in Philly with his name tattooed on their bodies. And while the names might not be all that enticing, there's not a whole lot left at this point, so Brand must act fast if he hopes to add the right pieces before the market's completely dried up.
And given the current rate at which moves are being made, that won't be long.
In the meantime, we'll keep you up to date with all the latest NBA free agency news and rumors, especially when they involve the Sixers. Be sure to follow all the action in our live free agency tracker below:
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