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June 27, 2024

Sixers select Adem Bona with No. 41 overall pick

The Sixers have likely rounded out their 2024 NBA Draft class by selecting Adem Bona with the No. 41 overall pick on Thursday.

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Adem-Bona-Sixers-UCLA-2024-NBA-Draft_062724_USAT Kirby Lee/USA Today Sports

The Sixers added a big man early in the second round Thursday.

Owning the No. 41 overall pick in the 2024 NBA Draft on Thursday, the Sixers selected Nigerian center Adem Bona, who spent two years at UCLA.

Bona, 21, is an absolutely tireless worker, whose athleticism and effort are off the charts. He stands at 6-foot-9.5 and 243 pounds with a massive 7-foot-3.75 wingspan. In his sophomore campaign last season, Bona averaged 12.4 points, 5.9 rebounds, 1.8 blocks and 1.1 steals per game, shooting 58.8 percent from the field. He made 69.6 percent of his free throws and did not attempt a three-point shot.

The Sixers owned this pick as a result of last February's trade, which sent guard Jaden Springer to the Boston Celtics.

This comes less than a day after the team stuck with their first-round pick — No. 16 overall — and selected Duke guard Jared McCain.

While McCain — like all first-round picks — is assigned a rookie-scale contract with two guaranteed years and two team options, no such scale exists for second-round picks. Teams can give players they select in round two any kind of deal; some second-rounders receive deals that are partially-guaranteed or non-guaranteed, but since the creation of two-way contracts, many teams have focused on drafting players in round two who will accept those deals.

In fact, each of the last three No. 41 picks — Amari Bailey of the Charlotte Hornets in 2023, E.J. Liddell of the New Orleans Pelicans in 2022 and Joe Wieskamp of the San Antonio Spurs in 2021 — all signed two-way deals in their rookie seasons.

With very few players under contract for the 2024-25 season, it is entirely possible that Bona has a genuine chance of making the Sixers' roster on a standard contract — especially given how the Sixers prioritize depth behind Joel Embiid. But a two-way deal seems at least just as likely.

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