Sixers Eyeing Immediate Contributor With No. 24 Overall Pick

The Sixers have the No. 24 overall pick in the upcoming draft and they will look to select a prospect who can immediately help them win games.

“That’s hopefully somebody that can come in and contribute right away,” Sixers senior director of scouting Vince Rozman said of the team’s first-round pick (via Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer).

GM Elton Brand will look to players who’ve had more experience. The Sixers will target “a player with more of a mature game than a ‘project.’ But I don’t know if that’s necessarily driven by age,” Brand said.

The fact that Philadelphia is hoping to land a rotation player in the draft comes as no surprise. The Sixers will attempt to bring back Jimmy Butler, Tobias Harris, and J.J. Redick this summer, and if they’re successful, they’ll be limited in their ability to make upgrades to supplement their current group, as I detailed on a recent episode of NBA Math’s Hardwood Knocks podcast.

If the Sixers bring back their playoff starting five, the non-taxpayer’s mid-level exception—projected to come in at $9.246MM—would be the club’s greatest tool in acquiring additional talent. Teams have the ability to offer a free agent the entire amount of the MLE as a starting salary but can also split that amount among multiple players.

The Sixers also have four selections in the second round (Nos. 33, 34, 42, and 54). Philadelphia has worked out a bevy of prospects and will continue the evaluation process through draft night. No prospect may be as notable as Terry Harris (North Carolina A&T), brother of Tobias.

“One, they look a lot alike. That’s also interesting,” Rozman said. “But [Terry] is 6’6″. He can shoot. He defends. It’s got to be a proud moment for the family and Tobias and everybody.”

In addition to Terry, the Sixers have also brought in Tyler Harris for an audition at their free agent minicamp.

While Terry isn’t expected to be drafted, the Sixers own four of the draft’s final 28 selections, which gives them the flexibility to take an untraditional route in extracting value from their late picks.

Such late selections typically have a low probability of yielding a contributor, so using them in a manner that would be favorable to one of their max free agents wouldn’t come with great opportunity cost. This is strictly speculation, as the team’s plan with its second-rounders is unknown. All that appears certain is that the Sixers will look to use their first selection on a player who can contribute from day one.

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