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June 28, 2016

Report: Sixers will be ‘serious suitors’ for Harrison Barnes in free agency

What Sixers president of basketball operations Bryan Colangelo plans on doing in free agency remains to be seen, but ESPN’s Marc Stein just floated an interesting name: Golden State’s Harrison Barnes.

Barnes is coming off a nightmare NBA Finals in which he shot 35 percent from the field and 31 percent from three-point range despite the fact that Cleveland routinely left him wide-open. Even with the poor performance on the game's biggest stage, he’s a better player than he showed in the playoffs. Barnes can defend multiple positions (including the 4) and makes threes at an above-average rate.

The question is whether the 24-year-old Barnes is the type of player you would want to invest heavily in. The Splash Brothers and all of those open looks wouldn’t be coming with him, and Barnes would likely cost the Sixers a max offer sheet of four years in the area of $94 million (or 25 percent of the projected $94 million cap).

A restricted free agent, Barnes would go back to the Warriors if Golden State simply decided to match the offer sheet. If the Dubs aren’t able to land Kevin Durant in free agency, that still seems like a very real possibility. This summer, Barnes will play for Team USA in the Olympics, the same Team USA that is run by Sixers advisor Jerry Colangelo.

Stay tuned on this one.

Follow Rich on Twitter: @rich_hofmann