The Sixers have finalized their 20-man roster for training camp, announcing today in a press release that they’ve signed veteran center Emeka Okafor to fill their final roster spot. The club also confirmed that Kris Humphries, whose deal with Philadelphia was previously reported, is now formally under contract as well.
Okafor, who will turn 35 later this week, last played in the NBA during the 2012/13 campaign, making 77 starts at center for the Wizards that season. However, injury issues – including a herniated disc in the big man’s neck – derailed Okafor’s career. The former second overall pick indicated earlier this summer that he had been medically cleared and hoped to make it back to the NBA.
While Okafor will attend training camp with the Sixers, it remains to be seen if the club will represent his path back to a spot on a regular season roster. Philadelphia only has 12 players on fully guaranteed contracts, but Robert Covington, Richaun Holmes, and T.J. McConnell all seem likely to make the 15-man squad on non-guaranteed deals. Even if the 76ers were to waive or trade one of their top 15 players, Okafor would still have to beat out other camp invitees, including Humphries.
Still, it’s good to see the former UConn standout get another shot. In 590 career regular season contests in Charlotte, New Orleans, and Washington, Okafor has nearly averaged a double-double, with 12.3 PPG, 9.9 RPG, and 1.7 BPG.
Okafor is a distant cousin of current Sixers big man Jahlil Okafor.