JULY 16, 7:30pm: The signing is official, per team press release.
JULY 4, 2:50pm: Johnson’s new one-year deal will be worth the veteran’s minimum, according to Jake Fischer of SI.com (Twitter link).
2:29pm: The Sixers are finalizing a contract agreement with free agent big man Amir Johnson that will keep him in Philadelphia, reports ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (via Twitter). According to Wojnarowski, Johnson is expected to sign a one-year deal.
Johnson, 31, initially joined the 76ers in the summer of 2017 when he inked a one-year, $11MM deal with the club. Like J.J. Redick, whose salary will go from $23MM last year to about $12-13MM in 2018/19, Johnson figures to return at a lesser rate.
The Sixers have committed just about all their projected cap room to Redick and trade acquisition Wilson Chandler, but could offer Johnson the $4.45MM room exception or a minimum-salary contract if they don’t intend to clear additional space with another roster move.
In 74 games for Philadelphia in 2017/18, Johnson provided veteran stability in the frontcourt, primarily serving as Joel Embiid‘s backup at the five. He averaged 4.6 PPG, 4.5 RPG, and 1.6 APG in 15.8 minutes per contest.
The 76ers entered the offseason with 11 players under contract, and have since drafted and signed Zhaire Smith and Landry Shamet, agreed to re-sign Redick, struck a deal to acquire Chandler, and now agreed to terms with Johnson as well.
That brings Philadelphia’s projected roster count to 16, without accounting for the possibility that the team could bring over draft-and-stash prospect Jonah Bolden this offseason. As such, a trade or cut figures to be coming at some point, with Jerryd Bayless and Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot among the players whose roster spots look least secure.
Their agreement with Johnson also seems likely to take the Sixers out of the running for veteran center Kyle O’Quinn, who was reportedly drawing “heavy interest” from Philadelphia on the first day of free agency.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.