Philadelphia 76ers Rumors

Grizzlies Among Teams Eyeing Joe Ingles

September 2 at 3:24pm CDT By Chuck Myron

3:23pm: Ingles is likely to receive a guaranteed salary from the NBA team that ends up with him, Stein writes in his full story. Marc Gasol, a marquee name among potential 2015 free agents, is widely known to admire Ingles, Stein notes.

2:59pm: The Grizzlies are again in the hunt for Ingles, Stein reports (Twitter link). Ingles turned down a two-year offer from Memphis last year, as we noted below.

TUESDAY, 2:13pm: Ingles is a “virtual lock” to sign with an NBA team for the coming season, as seven or eight teams are in pursuit, tweets Marc Stein of ESPN.com. The Sixers still appear to be one of them, but Ingles is unlikely to sign with Philadelphia, Stein adds (on Twitter).

MONDAY, 1:26pm: Australian small forward Joe Ingles has fielded interest from the Sixers, sources tell Sporando’s Orazio Cauchi (Twitter link). David Pick of Eurobasket.com reported this weekend that multiple NBA teams were eyeing the 26-year-old, so it looks like Philadelphia has some competition.

The Grizzlies, Hawks and Jazz were reportedly interested in Ingles as of March, when Pick wrote that he was thinking about making the jump to the NBA this summer. Ingles rejected a two-year offer from Memphis last year, around the same time that the Pacers, Bucks and Clippers also seemingly had their eyes on the veteran of international play. NBA teams passed on him in the 2009 draft, and his pro numbers haven’t been impressive. Ingles averaged just 6.0 points in 21.2 minutes per game for Maccabi Tel Aviv this past season, but he’s been a more significant part of the offense for the Australian national team in the FIBA World Cup this week, notching 14.5 PPG in 26.5 MPG.

The Sixers have no shortage of cap flexibility to outbid other NBA suitors and float an offer large enough to pry Ingles from overseas. They also have plenty of roster space. They’re carrying only eight guaranteed deals, as our roster counts show. Philadelphia can also provide Ingles with a familiar presence in coach Brett Brown, who coached him on the Australian national team in the 2012 Olympics, as Paul Garcia of Project Spurs notes (on Twitter).

And-Ones: Allen, Thabeet, Arroyo, Ingles

September 2 at 3:15pm CDT By Chuck Myron

Only a half dozen second-round picks from this June are without deals to play in the NBA, overseas or the D-League, as our log of this year’s draft pick signings shows, and Friday looms as a key date for them. That’s the last day their NBA teams have to make a required one-year tender for the minimum salary without losing their rights to them. Such glorified training camp invitations might not be ideal for draftees who’d hoped to establish more solid footing in the NBA, but if any are at an impasse in negotiations, the deadline could be a tipping point. While we wait to see how that plays out, here’s the latest from around the league:

  • Ray Allen has fielded recruiting calls from LeBron James and others, as the sharpshooter tells Don Amore of The Hartford Courant, but Allen cites a desire to stay around his family as he continues to insist that there’s a strong chance he’s played his last game. “I don’t want to go into a situation where I don’t understand the coaching, don’t understand the direction of the team,” Allen said. “My family is very important in making the decision. Right now, there is nothing that I need to do. If I ultimately decide this will be it for me, I’m content with that.”
  • Hasheem Thabeet remains on the Sixers roster, so it appears they’ve guaranteed his salary for the coming season. Monday was the last day they could waive him without owing him his $1.25MM pay for 2014/15, as Anthony Slater of The Oklahoman confirmed. Philadelphia was reportedly likely to waive him in advance of that deadline.
  • NBA teams would have to buy Carlos Arroyo out of his deal with Galatasaray in Turkey to bring him stateside for this season, and while he’d consider returning to the Association, no one from the NBA has shown serious interest, as he tells HoopsHype’s David Alarcon.
  • The widespread NBA interest in Joe Ingles is surprising, observes David Pick of Eurobasket.com (Twitter link). The Australian small forward was having a tough time generating interest from European teams before this week’s strong FIBA World Cup showing, according to Pick.

Sixers Lead In Trades During Sam Hinkie’s Tenure

September 2 at 8:58am CDT By Chuck Myron

Sixers GM Sam Hinkie garners plenty of attention for his bold rebuilding plan, but lost amid the team’s efforts to build from the ground up is Hinkie’s unmatched willingness to trade. Philadelphia has been a part of 14 trades since Hinkie took the job in May 2013, and no other team has come close to that total.

The Sixers have traded away mainstays Evan Turner, Thaddeus Young and Spencer Hawes and netted cap flexibility, draft picks and cash in return through their various dealings. Our recap of the trades from the 2014 offseason, 2013/14 regular season and the 2013 offseason tell the tale. The next most eager executive on the trade market over that time has been Bucks GM John Hammond, who’s pulled off nine trades. Kings GM Pete D’Alessandro will join Hammond at nine once Sacramento’s Jason Terry trade becomes official, and D’Alessandro, like Hinkie, made his debut as an NBA front office chief last summer.

It’s worth noting that the two teams most willing to trade over the last 15 months had the worst records in the NBA this past season, with the Kings not far behind. There’s a general corollary between winning and stability, but three of the four teams that have traded the least since the 2013 offseason failed to make the playoffs last year, including the Pistons, the only team that didn’t swing more than a single deal. Former president of basketball operations Joe Dumars executed that lone swap, the Brandon Jennings sign-and-trade.

A ranking of the teams that have completed the most trades since the beginning of the 2013 offseason is below, in descending order. This takes into account sign-and-trades, draft-pick swaps, and cash transactions, but it doesn’t count draft picks surrendered as compensation for another team letting a coach out of his contract, as we’ve seen with Doc Rivers and Jason Kidd. The number of trades from this offseason is at the left, followed by those from the 2013/14 season and those from the 2013 offseason. The total number of trades is after the equal sign.

  • Sixers 6,4,6 = 14
  • Bucks 2,1,6 = 9
  • Cavaliers 5,2,1 = 8
  • Celtics, 2,2,4 = 8
  • Kings 2,4,2 = 8
  • Nets 4,3,1 = 8
  • Hawks 3,1,3 = 7
  • Jazz 3,0,4 = 7
  • Mavericks 3,0,4 = 7
  • Nuggets 2,2,3 = 7
  • Pelicans 4,1,2 = 7
  • Thunder 3,1,3 = 7
  • Timberwolves 3,1,3 = 7
  • Wizards 4,1,2 = 7
  • Grizzlies 1,1,4 = 6
  • Raptors 3,2,1 = 6
  • Rockets 3,1,2 = 6
  • Suns 1,0,5 = 6
  • Warriors 0,2,4 = 6
  • Bulls 3,2,0 = 5
  • Hornets 4,1,0 = 5
  • Clippers 1,2,1 = 4
  • Heat 1,2,1 = 4
  • Knicks 3,0,1 = 4
  • Pacers 1,1,2 = 4
  • Trail Blazers 0,0,4 = 4
  • Lakers 2,1,0 = 3
  • Magic 3,0,0 = 3
  • Spurs 1,1,0 = 2
  • Pistons 0,0,1 = 1

And-Ones: McRae, Clippers, Dudley

August 31 at 10:08pm CDT By Zach Links

Kevin Durant won’t be a free agent for another two years, but he was on the verge of hitting the open market when it comes to endorsements.  Durant secured an offer of between $265MM-$285MM from Under Armour, but Nike exercised its right to match today, as Darren Rovell and Marc Stein of ESPN.com write.  The exact parameters of the deal aren’t known, but it’s expected that Durant will earn more from the sneaker contract than he will from the Thunder over the next two years.  Here’s tonight’s look around the NBA..

  • Chris Anstey, the coach of CTI Melbourne United, spoke highly of his team’s newest addition, 76ers rookie Jordan McRae in an email to Marc Narducci of The Inquirer. “We are thrilled to have Jordan join us and play a part in his continued development, in consultation with Sixers coaching staff, to give him the best possible chance of making their roster next year or earlier,” Anstey wrote.  The coach also confirmed that the Sixers have the right to call McRae back until January.  McRae spoke with Hoops Rumors over the summer prior to the draft about his skill set and NBA goals.
  • Even though Milwaukee was “a little cold” for his tastes and he was waived by the Clippers just days after they acquired him, Miroslav Raduljica said he still wants to stay in the NBA, writes NBA.com’s John Schuhmann.  He didn’t go into detail on who might be interested, however, saying he’s only heard rumors about other teams.
  • The Clippers‘ trade of Jared Dudley might have been perplexing to some, but it made sense for a couple of financial reasons, as Jesse Blancarte of Basketball Insiders explains.  Thanks to the deal, the Clippers saved roughly $3.5MM this season and gives them some breathing room under the hard-cap.  And, by waiving Carlos Delfino and Raduljica, the Clippers opened up some roster space.  They’re reportedly on the verge of a new deal with veteran Hedo Turkoglu.

And-Ones: Witte, Young, Dragic

August 31 at 5:29pm CDT By Eddie Scarito

The Sixers director of player personnel, Courtney Witte, is leaving to take a scouting position with the Clippers, Dei Lynam of CSNPhilly.com reports. According to Lynam’s source, Witte had been told by the Sixers that his contract wasn’t going to be renewed, and that the search for Witte’s replacement has been “ongoing for some time.”

Here’s more from around the league:

  • The league has trended towards smaller lineups the last few seasons, but John Zitzler of Basketball Insiders takes a look at five centers that are on the rise. Zitzler believes bigger things are in store for DeMarcus Cousins, Andre Drummond, Jonas Valanciunas, DeAndre Jordan, and Nikola Vucevic.
  • In an interview with Michael Rand of the Star Tribune, Thaddeus Young was asked how the rebuilding process differs between the Wolves and the Sixers. Young said, “I think the situation in Philly is much different. It’s the same process, but this team is much more competitive and it’s a better roster. Philly, they were getting rid of everybody and getting worse. But I think [Philadelphia GM Sam Hinkie] is doing a great job and has made some big moves.”
  • Zoran Dragic has re-negotiated his contract with Unicaja Malaga, reports La Opinion de Malaga (Translation by Emiliano Carchia of Sportando). Dragic’s contract has a buyout clause that he can exercise next June if he decides to leave for the NBA, Carchia notes. The Pacers are reportedly among the teams eyeing Dragic.

Poll: Which 2013/14 Trade Will Have Greatest Impact?

August 30 at 8:51pm CDT By Cray Allred

When you look through last season’s trades, you’ll quickly notice that many of the deals revolved around players on the last years of their contracts, second-round draft picks, and other low-impact assets. A good amount of the players traded last year have already moved on from the team that acquired them, and many of the moving pieces failed to significantly help or hinder the fate of the teams involved for 2013/14.

Still, any given trade’s legacy can drag on for many years and in unexpected ways, as Eddie Scarito’s Hoops Rumors Trade Retrospective series has shown. I’ve gathered some of last year’s trades with loose ends and/or ramifications that have already stretched beyond last season.

  1. Kings and Raptors swap Rudy Gay, Greivis Vasquez, Patrick Patterson, and other pieces. While Quincy Acy, Aaron Gray, and John Salmons are no longer a part of either franchise, Gay, Vasquez, and Patterson are all on the same rosters through at least 2014/15. Toronto became a playoff team after this trade, and Gay played some of the best basketball of his career as a King. Each franchise hopes to have cemented part of its future core with this deal.
  2. Cavaliers and Bulls swap Luol Deng, Andrew Bynum, and picks. Deng is now a member of the Heat, and Bynum is an unsigned free agent. The Bulls are still owed Sacramento’s first-round pick, which is top-10 protected through 2017, along with a handful of others from this deal. Chicago also avoided the tax by waiving Bynum’s partially guaranteed contract, and this deal marked the beginning of a strategy to chisel out enough cap flexibility acquire a marquee talent this summer. The team aimed for Carmelo Anthony, but ultimately signed Pau Gasol.
  3. Sixers and Pacers swap Danny Granger, Evan Turner, and more. The Sixers still own the Warriors second-round pick for 2015, and Indiana re-signed Lavoy Allen after receiving him in this trade. The bigger names in Granger and Turner have both landed in Miami and Boston, respectively. The Sixers bought out Granger after the deal, and the remaining hole at shooting guard plays into Philadelphia’s plans to remain less than competitive for the coming season. Granger was no longer a high-impact player for the Pacers at the time of the deal, although the team struggled mightily after his departure and is now without Paul George and Lance Stephenson for 2014/15, offensive talents that made Granger expendable at the time.

A team’s track record of draft success and player development, combined with the deal’s timeliness, all factor into our expectations. Which trade do you expect to look back on as more than a wrinkle in the NBA landscape?

Jordan McRae To Play In Australia

August 29 at 8:48am CDT By Chuck Myron

Sixers second-round draftee Jordan McRae has signed with CTI Melbourne United of Australia, the team announced (hat tip to Sportando’s Orazio Cauchi). The terms aren’t immediately clear, but it looks like this year’s 58th overall pick is set to spend the season overseas rather than with Philadelphia, which acquired his NBA rights in a draft-night swap with the Spurs.

The 23-year-old shooting guard gradually emerged as a scoring force over his time at the University of Tennessee, averaging 18.7 points per game as a senior this past season, 10.1 more than he’d poured in as a sophomore. McRae led the Volunteers in scoring this year, outpacing 35th overall pick Jarnell Stokes, and he also possesses a 7’0.5″ wingspan, according to DraftExpress, to aid him defensively. McRae prides himself on his versatility and is confident he can play point guard, too, as he told Zach Links of Hoops Rumors prior to the draft for our Prospect Profile Series. McRae will have a chance to refine his skills in Australia, where he’ll play for former Bulls and Mavericks center Chris Anstey, the CTI Melbourne United head coach.

Philadelphia was among the teams to have McRae in for a predraft workout, as McRae also informed Zach. The patiently rebuilding Sixers will wait to bring him stateside, just as they’re doing with No. 12 overall pick Dario Saric and 52nd overall pick Vasilije Micic, two others among the six 2014 draftees whose rights the team possesses. McRae will join fellow second-round pick DeAndre Daniels, whose NBA rights belong to the Raptors, in Australia this season.

Explaining The Wolves’ Trade Exception

August 28 at 11:54am CDT By Chuck Myron

The Timberwolves reaped a trade exception worth $6,308,194 from Saturday’s completion of the Kevin Love trade, as Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders confirmed Tuesday. That wasn’t the only avenue the Wolves could have gone down to create an exception from the swap, as Pincus pointed out, and the multitude of scenarios in play seemed to add to the confusion that swirled about the precise details of the trade almost until it went down. The creation of trade exceptions is one of the most difficult to understand facets of a salary cap that’s otherwise convoluted enough, but we’ll try to explain how the Wolves wound up with the exception and examine alternate scenarios they could have pursued.

The trade itself was a three-teamer that saw Love go to the Cavs, Thaddeus Young, Andrew Wiggins and Anthony Bennett go to the Wolves, and Luc Mbah a Moute, Alexey Shved and a draft pick go to the Sixers. Still, the league allows each team involved in a trade to frame it differently so that the ability to create trade exceptions is maximized. A trade exception is the product of a deal in which a team gives up more salary than it receives. They allow capped-out teams to participate in subsequent trades in which they take back more salary than they relinquish, trades that otherwise wouldn’t be legal under the terms of the collective bargaining agreement.

The Timberwolves chose to regard the transaction as a pair of trades, one in which they swapped Love for Young and another in which they gave up Mbah a Moute and Shved and took back Wiggins and Bennett, as Pincus pointed out. It doesn’t matter that Love went to a different team than Young came from, nor that Mbah a Moute and Shved went to a different team than Wiggins and Bennett did. For the purposes of creating trade exceptions, it simply matters what the Wolves relinquished and what they got back.

Each of the component trades had to meet the NBA’s salary matching requirements for the capped-out Wolves and Cavs, but not for the Sixers, who are far beneath the cap. The swap of Love for Young meets the requirements for Minnesota, since the Wolves are giving up more than they’re receiving. Love’s $15,719,062 salary is more than 150% plus $100K greater than Young’s pay of $9,410,869, which would exceed the amount the salary matching rules allow if Philadelphia were over the cap, but all that matters is what the Wolves gave up and what they’re getting, so Philly’s situation isn’t relevant as it applies to the trade from Minnesota’s perspective. Of course, Love isn’t, nor was he ever going to be, a member of the Sixers, but again, the NBA allows teams to structure “mini-trades” as they see fit within the larger structure of the transaction itself for the purpose of creating trade exceptions.

The other “mini-trade” the Wolves pull off here sees them exchange Mbah a Moute, who makes $4,382,575, and Shved, at $3,282,057, for the salaries of Bennett ($5,563,920) and Wiggins ($5,510,640). They’re receiving more than they’re giving up, so the sum of the salaries for Bennett and Wiggins have to come in under the matching limit, which, once more, is 150% of the outgoing salary plus $100K, since the outgoing salary is less than $9.8MM. Mbah a Moute and Shved combine to make $7,664,632, so 150% of that figure is $11,496,948, and another $100K makes it $11,596,948. That’s not too much more than $11,074,560, the sum of the salaries for Bennett and Wiggins, but it works. Since this swap is allowed, it lets the Wolves pair it with the Love/Young swap, which is the one in which they give up more than they get. The amount of the difference between the salaries for Love and Young results in Minnesota’s $6,308,194 trade exception.

That exception is better than the $4,644,503 exception the Wolves could have come away with if they had framed the transaction as a trade of Love for Wiggins and Bennett and a swap of Mbah a Moute and Shved for Young. That structure is more straightforward, since the “mini-trades” involve exchanges of players that mimic the real-life structure of the transaction, but it’s also less advantageous for Minnesota, which is why the team took a more complicated route.

The Wolves also had the option of creating a pair of smaller trade exceptions that would add up to more than the one they chose. They could have done that if they considered Love for Young, Bennett and Wiggins as one trade and the offloading of Mbah a Moute and Shved as second and third trades. The league wouldn’t allow Mbah a Moute and Shved to go out on their own without the Sixers giving anything in return if they were standalone transactions, but since this is within the structure of a larger trade, it’s OK. The salary-matching requirement for the other component of this structure is different because Love makes more than $9.8MM. So, the Timberwolves are allowed to take back Love’s salary plus $5MM, or $20,719,062. The salaries for Bennett, Wiggins and Young add up to $20,485,429, a shade under the limit. But, again, it works.

That means the Wolves could reap exceptions of $4,382,575 and $3,282,057 equivalent to the salaries of Mbah a Moute and Shved. That would allow them to add a greater amount of salary via trade overall, but it wouldn’t allow them to acquire a single player who makes more than either amount, as the $6,308,194 Love-for-Young exception would. Minnesota chose to give itself the chance to net a more highly paid player, and while it could still split that exception on multiple acquisitions, the team wouldn’t be able to accommodate quite as much salary as it otherwise could have.

Understanding trade exceptions is no easy task, but it’s a requirement for every NBA executive. Wolves president of basketball operations Flip Saunders and his staff surely spent plenty of hours during the weeks-long waiting period between the time the teams agreed to the trade and the time the trade became official crunching the numbers and weighing all the different scenarios at play. Cavs GM David Griffin and Sixers GM Sam Hinkie surely did, too, even though neither of them had a way to come away with a trade exception from the transaction. The Sixers have plenty of cap room that serves in place of any exception. The Cavs have Love and a team that will contend for the title. The Wolves have a new foundation and a mathematical weapon they can use to acquire a player they otherwise couldn’t within the next year.

Larry Coon’s Salary Cap FAQ and the Basketball Insiders Salary pages were used in the creation of this post. 

Sam Hinkie On Rebuilding, Mbah a Moute, Shved

August 28 at 9:55am CDT By Chuck Myron

The majority of Hoops Rumors readers who voted in Wednesday’s poll believe that Sixers GM Sam Hinkie is pursuing a shrewd strategy, at least in theory, as he continues to strip the roster of veteran mainstays. Philadelphia reduced its cap commitments once more in this weekend’s Kevin Love trade, and only Jason Richardson and the newly acquired Luc Mbah a Moute have salaries that exceed what any Sixer on a rookie scale contract will make this season. Hinkie addressed his philosophy and the players he acquired this weekend as he spoke in a conference call that took place hours before the team’s participation in Tuesday’s Hasheem Thabeet trade, one from which the Sixers will likely net nothing more than $100K in cash. Max Rappaport of Sixers.com recaps the GM’s comments, and we’ll share a few highlights here:

On the team’s aggressive rebuilding:

“I continue to hear optimism from our fans about the type of thing that we’re building. I think they view our approach as bold, but I think they view it as something that is a departure and something that could very well end up in a place that we could all be proud of.”

On Luc Mbah a Moute:

“Luc’s relationship with Joel [Embiid] can only help. I think we’re definitely in the mode of player development, and Joel will be a big part of that. Sometimes that’s about getting in the gym and getting up more shots, and sometimes it’s, ‘This is the way life in the NBA works, this is the rhythm, this is how to take care of your body, this is how to get your rest, this is how to manage your life off the floor.’”

On Alexey Shved, whom the team is reportedly likely to keep, along with Mbah a Moute:

“He’s played at a very high level in some high-pressure games. He’s a ball-handling guard that can play pick-and-roll, off the ball sometimes, sometimes on the ball, and bring it up on occasion. That’s something of interest to us.”

On the procedure the team is following:

“Step one is our ability to coach [our young players] and see them on the floor. But definitely the way we approach it is that every day we’re looking for people that have the kind of characteristics, that have the kind of work ethic, and that have the kind of talent to really move our program forward. We focused from the very beginning on building something special for the city of Philadelphia and trying to put a program in place to do that. We’re focused on doing all the things every day, including the things that may sound mundane – the details of our practice facility, counting the number of threes our guys are getting up in the middle of May … we’re focused on those kinds of things because that’s what we can control to build what we want to build as fast as we can.” 

Sixers Sign Joel Embiid

August 28 at 8:48am CDT By Chuck Myron

THURSDAY, 8:48am: The Sixers still haven’t made an official announcement, but the appearance of the move on the RealGM transactions log provides further confirmation that the signing has taken place.

TUESDAY, 11:56pm: No. 3 overall pick Joel Embiid has signed his rookie scale contract with the Sixers, according to his verified Twitter account. The team has yet to make an official announcement, but it appears as though the last remaining first-round pick from this June who had yet to sign with his NBA team or agree to play elsewhere has inked his deal. He’ll make nearly $3.69MM, as our table of salaries for this year’s first-rounders shows.

Embiid was a strong contender, if not the front-runner, to become the No. 1 overall pick until he suffered a broken foot shortly before the draft. The most recent estimate has him out anywhere from between November and February, though it appears as though he’s in line to see action at some point this season for Philadelphia. A back injury that forced him to miss the final six games of his college career at Kansas sparked concern for much of the spring, but ultimately that didn’t seem to depress his draft stock nearly as much as his foot did.

Whenever he’s healthy enough to play, he’ll look to build upon last season’s breakout campaign, one in which he came to join college teammate Andrew Wiggins, a far more heralded prospect coming out of high school, and Jabari Parker as contenders for the top pick. The 7’0″ center only began playing basketball in 2011, so his skills are raw, but with a game that shows shades of Hakeem Olajuwon, his upside is vast, as Zach Links of Hoops Rumors examined this past April in his Prospect Profile of Embiid.

He’ll join fellow Cameroonian native and mentor Luc Mbah a Moute on the Sixers, and Mbah a Moute’s close ties to Embiid appeared to be one of the reasons Philadelphia acquired the veteran forward as part of its participation in the Kevin Love trade. The 20-year-old Embiid won’t encounter much in the way of immediate expectations in Philadelphia, which is in a long-term rebuilding effort, and while Embiid is a centerpiece of that project, the Sixers appear willing to wait for his skills to more fully develop.

The Sixers had been carrying 16 players after Tuesday’s acquisition of Hasheem Thabeet and before Embiid’s signing, though Philadelphia appears poised to waive Thabeet. Embiid is one of just eight players with fully guaranteed deals on Philadelphia’s roster.

Eddie Scarito contributed to this post.