Atlantic Notes: Harrell, Nets, Hart, Brown

Although reserve big man Montrezl Harrell tore the ACL and medial meniscus in his right knee this summer, the Sixers intend to keep him on their roster, at least for the time being, per Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer.

Though Pompey notes that Harrell, who inked a one-year, minimum-salary contract to return to the Sixers, most likely will not recuperate in time to play for the team in 2023/24, he believes retaining the former Sixth Man of the Year is the right play. Pompey suggests the Sixers could look to package his salary in a trade later.

Given that Harrell was the third or possibly fourth center on the club’s depth chart, he wasn’t likely to have played major minutes anyway. The 6’7″ vet averaged 5.6 PPG and 2.8 RPG in 2022/23, his lowest numbers since his 2015/16 rookie season.

There’s more out of the Atlantic Division:

  • The Nets still have three roster spots – including one two-way slot – open ahead of training camp this fall, Net Income of Nets Daily writes. Net Income notes that the team still has its bi-annual exception and full mid-level exception at its disposal, and its $157MM in cumulative player salary puts it $9MM beneath the NBA’s $165MM luxury tax threshold. The free agent market at this point is a bit threadbare, so one wonders if Brooklyn would opt to use more than a veteran’s minimum on any of the still-available personnel.
  • Knicks swingman Josh Hart becomes extension-eligible on August 9, but as Fred Katz of The Athletic notes, that isn’t stopping him from partaking in Team USA during this month’s FIBA World Cup. Katz writes that the typical move these days for players with big money potentially on the line is to preserve their bodies and avoid possible offseason injuries until a deal is done, but Hart is happy to buck that trend. An extension of his current deal could net him, at most, a four-year contract worth up to $81.3MM.
  • Although he inked a new five-year, maximum-salary contract extension this offseason, All-Star Celtics wing Jaylen Brown still has one glaring issue in his game: protecting the ball. As Jared Weiss of The Athletic notes, Brown coughed up the ball 66 times during the 2023 playoffs, including eight incredibly costly turnovers in a Game 7 Eastern Conference Finals defeat against the Heat. Weiss takes a look at how Brown might be able to limit this particular problem going forward.
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