Furkan Korkmaz

Furkan Korkmaz Re-Signs With Sixers

AUGUST 9: The Sixers have officially re-signed Korkmaz, the team announced today in a press release.


AUGUST 2: The Sixers have agreed to re-sign wing Furkan Korkmaz on a three-year, $15MM contract, agents Mike Lindeman and Jeff Schwartz told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (Twitter link). It’s a fully guaranteed deal, per Derek Bodner of The Athletic (Twitter link).

Philadelphia has full Bird rights on Korkmaz, which will allow the team to ink him without cutting into its mid-level exception, ESPN’s Bobby Marks tweets.

Korkmaz was a late first-round pick in 2016 and joined Philadelphia the following season. Last season, he appeared in 55 games, including 11 starts, and averaged 9.1 PPG. He’s a career 37.7% 3-point shooter and he’s taken 786 of his 1,260 career shot attempts from beyond the arc.

He’ll once again add depth at the small forward spot for an organization angling to make deeper playoff runs.

Free Agent Rumors: Lowry, Caruso, Cavs, Trent, Batum, Bradley

The Pelicans are viewed as the most likely of Kyle Lowry‘s prospective suitors to guarantee a third year in their offer to the veteran point guard, sources tell Michael Grange of Sportsnet.ca. However, it’s the Heat that are considered the current frontrunners to land Lowry.

ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski confirms as much in his latest report, suggesting that the Heat are ready and willing to attach assets to Goran Dragic to entice the Raptors to accept a sign-and-trade offer, with Precious Achiuwa and draft picks among the pieces that could be in play. According to Wojnarowski, the Pelicans and Mavericks – rumored to be two of Lowry’s most aggressive suitors – are beginning to consider other options as they look for a starting point guard.

Here are a few more updates on free agents, with the start of the 2021 free agent period less than 24 hours away:

Rosters Announced For Olympic Qualifying Tournaments

Four qualifying tournaments to determine the final four teams in the men’s basketball pool at the Tokyo Olympics are set to tip off on Tuesday. In advance of the Olympic qualifiers, the 24 teams involved have officially set their 12-man rosters, according to a press release from FIBA.

More than two dozen current NBA players are participating in the tournament, and 11 of the 24 teams competing for Olympic spots have at least one current NBA players on their respective rosters. Of those clubs, Team Canada has the biggest contingent of NBA players — eight of the 12 players on Nick Nurse‘s squad finished the season on an NBA roster. Turkey is next with four NBA players.

The four qualifying tournaments will take place in Serbia, Lithuania, Croatia, and Canada. Only the winner of each six-team group will advance to Tokyo. Those four winners will join Japan, Nigeria, Argentina, Iran, France, Spain, Australia, and the U.S. in the 12-team Olympic tournament.

The teams that move onto the Olympics may tweak their rosters for Tokyo, depending on the availability of certain players. For instance, if Greece were to win its qualifying tournament, perhaps Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo – who remains active in the playoffs for now – would make an effort to join the team in Tokyo next month.

Here are the NBA players on the OQT rosters:

Belgrade, Serbia

Kaunas, Lithuania

Split, Croatia

Victoria, Canada

There are also many former NBA players among the 24 rosters, including Mario Hezonja (Croatia), Milos Teodosic (Serbia), Jan Vesely (Czech Republic), Timofey Mozgov (Russia), and Anthony Bennett (Canada).

To view the full rosters, be sure to visit FIBA’s official site and click through to each team from there.

Olympic Notes: Spain, Simmons, Nigeria, Turkey, Garland

Veteran center Pau Gasol, who has represented Spain in four Olympic tournaments so far, remains on track to be part of the team in Tokyo, per an Associated Press report. Gasol was one of 18 players included on Spain’s preliminary roster for the Tokyo games, joining his brother – Lakers center Marc Gasol – and Timberwolves point guard Ricky Rubio.

Timberwolves forward Juan Hernangomez, Pelicans big man Willy Hernangomez, and projected first-round pick Usman Garuba are among the other notable names on Spain’s preliminary roster, according to The Associated Press.

Here’s more on the Tokyo Olympics:

Free Agent Stock Watch: Atlantic Division

Throughout the season, Hoops Rumors takes a closer look at players who will be free agents or could become free agents this off-season. We examine if their stock is rising or falling due to performance and other factors. This week, we take a look at players from the Atlantic Division:

Chris Boucher, Raptors, 28, PF/C (Up) – Signed to a two-year, $13.5MM deal in 2020

Boucher has a non-guaranteed $7MM salary for next season. The Raptors will have to decide in August whether to retain him. Right now, that decision is a no-brainer. Boucher has been one of the league’s top reserves, averaging 15.6 PPG and 6.6 RPG in 23.8 MPG through 14 games. He ranks third in the league in blocks (2.4) despite his second-unit status. He’s even developed a 3-point shot (48.1%). It will difficult for Boucher to sustain this pace but he’s doing more than enough to convince the front office to prevent him from entering free agency.

Dennis Smith Jr., Knicks, 23, PG (Down) – Signed to a four-year, $17.2MM deal in 2017

New coach Tom Thibodeau talked up Smith during training camp, saying “he’s gotten better and better.” That talk quickly died down. Smith has been a non-factor this season, in part because of a quad injury. There’s doesn’t seem to be any path to playing time with Immanuel Quickley establishing himself as one of the league’s top rookies. It’s been a steady decline for Smith, who started 69 games in his rookie year with Dallas and averaged 15.2 PPG. New York would have to extend a qualifying offer of $7MM+ to retain him. That’s not happening.

Furkan Korkmaz, Sixers, 23, SF/SG (Down) – Signed to a two-year, $3.4MM deal in 2019

An unrestricted free agent after the season, Korkmaz was sidelined by an adductor strain late last month. He just returned to action on Wednesday, scoring seven points in 20 minutes against the Celtics. He made just two of nine field-goal attempts on Friday. As a second-unit player, Korkmaz must reestablish himself as a steady 3-point threat to hold onto his rotation spot under new coach Doc Rivers. He made 40.2% of his shots beyond the arc last season when his role expanded. He needs to get back into a 3-point rhythm quickly or risk becoming a spectator the second half of the season.

Daniel Theis, Celtics, 28, PF/C (Up) – Signed to a two-year, $10MM deal in 2019

Theis became increasingly important to the club last season, when he started 64 regular-season games and all 17 of its postseason contests in Orlando. His ability to guard pick-and-rolls and switch make him a key component in the Celtics’ defense. He’ll likely come off the bench with Kemba Walker back in action and Brad Stevens going with a smaller lineup. That didn’t faze Theis on Wednesday, as he racked up 23 points and 10 rebounds in 27 minutes against Philadelphia. He shouldn’t have any trouble getting a healthy raise in free agency this summer.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Sixers’ Korkmaz To Miss Minimum Of Two Weeks

The Sixers have lost one of their key reserves for at least the next two weeks. Guard Furkan Korkmaz has a left adductor strain and will be reevaluated in approximately two weeks, Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer tweets.

Korkmaz suffered the injury during the fourth quarter of Sunday’s game at Cleveland. He had gotten off to a slow start, averaging 6.0 PPG on 25% shooting in 18.3 MPG off the bench during Philadelphia’s first three contests.

Last season, Korkmaz appeared in 72 regular season games, averaging 9.8 PPG in 21.7 MPG while making 40.2% of his 3-point tries.

The Sixers have good depth at the wing positions, and players such as Matisse Thybulle and Tyrese Maxey should see an uptick in playing time with Korkmaz sidelined.

Korkmaz had his $1,762,796 salary for this season guaranteed last month. He’ll be an unrestricted free agent after the season.

Free Agent Stock Watch 2020: Atlantic Division

Every week, Hoops Rumors takes a closer look at players who will be free agents or could become free agents next offseason. We examine if their stock is rising or falling due to performance and other factors. This week, we take a look at players from the Atlantic Division:

Furkan Korkmaz, Sixers, 22, SG (Up) – Signed to a two-year, $3.34MM deal in 2019
This was the player the Sixers envisioned when they made Korkmaz a draft-and-stash pick in 2016. Korkmaz has become a steady presence in Philadelphia’s rotation and is averaging 8.9 PPG while shooting 39.5% from deep. He’s made a significant impact in the last five games, averaging 16.6 PPG while lifting the Sixers to four victories. With Josh Richardson out a few weeks with a hamstring injury, Korkmaz figures to get even more playing time in the near future. Korkmaz’s $1.76MM contract for next season isn’t guaranteed but it’s a foregone conclusion Philadelphia will retain him.

Joe Harris, Nets, 28, SF (Down) – Signed to a two-year, $16MM deal in 2018
Overall, Harris’ numbers are virtually identical to last season’s output, other than a dropoff from an outstanding 47.4% success rate on 3-point tries to a still very solid 40.8%. However, like his team, Harris has been in a slump. He’s scored 13 or fewer points in his last seven games and made seven more turnovers than 3-pointers during that stretch. Harris is too established to stay in this funk for very long. He will still receive offers well above his current salary of $7.67MM but stretches like this might temper some of the enthusiasm for his services when he heads into unrestricted free agency this summer.

Wayne Ellington, Knicks, 32, SG (Down) – Signed to a two-year, $16MM deal in 2019
Ellington had a couple of good years in Miami and gave Detroit a lift during the second half of last season but he’s been a non-factor with the Knicks. Ellington has only appeared in 23 games, averaging 4.0 PPG in 14.3 MPG while making just 30.9% of his 3-point attempts. If the veteran guard isn’t knocking down his threes, there’s no reason to play him — he hasn’t seen any court time since January 14. Only $1MM of Ellington’s $8MM contract for next season is guaranteed. It’s safe to say he will not have to other $7MM forwarded to his bank account. In fact, he may struggle to find anything more than the veteran’s minimum on the market this summer.

Fred VanVleet, Raptors, 25, SG (Up) – Signed to a two-year, $18MM deal in 2018
The arrow continues to point upward for the fourth-year guard, whose production has steadily climbed as his playing time has expanded. VanVleet has missed some games this season due to injuries, most recently a hamstring strain. In the 34 games he’s started, he’s averaging 18.5 PPG, 6.8 APG and 2.0 SPG while shooting 40.2% on 3-point attempts. In the first three games since returning to action, VanVleet averaged 23.7 PPG and made 14 of 19 3-point attempts. He could be looking at offers in the $20-25MM per year range as an unrestricted free agent.

Enes Kanter, Celtics, 27, C (Up) – Signed to a two-year, $9.77MM deal in 2019
Kanter was the third overall pick in the draft back in 2011, so it’s easy to overlook the fact he’s still just 27 years old. Kanter has always been a double-double machine when given extended minutes. He’s averaging 18.5 MPG, his lowest amount of court time since the 2012/13 season with Utah. Yet he’s posted six doubles-doubles since New Year’s Eve, including a game-changing 18-point, 11-rebound outing against the Lakers this week. Kanter holds a $5MM player option on his contract for next season. He might test the market again and see if he can get a better deal.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Sixers Notes: Thybulle, Korkmaz, Neto, Richardson

It hasn’t taken long for Matisse Thybulle to become recognized as one of the NBA’s best defenders, writes Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer. Defense was the calling card for Thybulle when he was selected with the 20th pick in this year’s draft, and his impact has been immediate. He leads the league in steals at 2.8 per game and is second on the team in blocks with 1.4 per night

“I try not to look at the numbers, because for me all the defensive (ones) just come from hustle and just getting lost in the game,” he said. “So it’s exciting to see the numbers. But do I really worry about them? No.

Sixers Notes: Horford, Simmons, Korkmaz, Scott

Al Horford decided to leave a contending team in Boston because he saw a better opportunity for a championship with the Sixers, writes Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer. Philadelphia enters camp among the favorites to win the NBA title, and Horford will serve as a veteran presence in an impressive starting lineup that also features Joel Embiid, Ben Simmons, Tobias Harris and Josh Richardson.

“The opportunity to win, I am going in my 13th season, that is important to me,” Horford said. “I feel we have an opportunity to win now and that was something that was hard for me to pass.”

Horford seemed like part of the foundation in Boston, but he surprised the Celtics by opting out of the final year of his contract and agreeing to a four-year, $109MM agreement with a bitter rival. He said the experience of leaving Atlanta for Boston three years ago helped him prepare for the adjustment of changing teams.

“I have done this before, so for me it is a little easier, the transition,” Horford said. “Another side of it can be overwhelming with all that comes with being on a new team and building relationships and getting to learn the city and all these things.”

There’s more from Philadelphia:

  • With a new five-year extension in hand, Simmons is ready for a fresh start to his NBA career, which includes ignoring critics who harp on his jump shot or anything else, relays Marc Narducci of The Philadelphia Inquirer. Simmons spent the last few months trying to fix his errant jumper and said he fell in love with the game again during the offseason. “I think I was too worried about what people were saying, what was going around, too many outside noises,” he said. “I was able to really block them out this summer and not really focus on what people were saying.”
  • Furkan Korkmaz will have to improve his 3-point shooting to have a consistent role this season, observes Derek Bodner of The Athletic. Korkmaz requested a trade last season and has complained about his lack of playing time. Bodner notes that Philadelphia added depth at the wing position, so Korkmaz may see even fewer minutes this year.
  • Mike Scott admits to poor judgment when he fought with Eagles fans after showing up to the team’s opening game in a Redskins jersey, relays ESPN.

Atlantic Notes: Knicks, Korkmaz, Dinwiddie, Sixers

The Knicks’ success could largely hinge on whether David Fizdale crafts a rotation that keeps both his veterans and rising stars happy this season, Steve Popper of Newsday writes.

New York shifted to Plan B in free agency this summer after superstars Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant opted to sign with the Nets, inking new players Julius Randle, Bobby Portis, Elfrid Payton, Wayne Ellington, Taj Gibson, Marcus Morris and Reggie Bullock to contracts.

The team also drafted Duke standout RJ Barrett with the No. 3 pick in June, giving Fizdale and his staff plenty of competitive options to sort through as training camp nears.

“That’s going to be great for us,” Knicks forward Kevin Knox said. “To be able to compete, I don’t think anybody’s guaranteed no starting lineup, no minutes, none of that . . . Everyone is gonna have to earn their minutes, earn their position. I think that’s going to be great for us going into training camp and competing. Nobody’s got a starting spot. Everyone’s got to fight to earn their minutes and earn their position.”

New York has missed the playoffs in each of their past six seasons. The team finished at 17-65 last season, good for the worst record in the league.

  • Lauren Rosen of NBA.com crafts a preseason profile on Sixers guard Furkan Korkmaz, who spent most of last season sidelined due to injury. “I think next year is going to be the most important year of my career,” Korkmaz said of the upcoming season. Korkmaz holds per-game averages of 4.9 points, 1.9 rebounds and 12.2 minutes in 62 contests with Philadelphia through two seasons.
  • Spencer Dinwiddie is confident that the Nets could win a championship this season, led by the star he believes is the top player in the league today: Durant, as relayed by Brian Lewis of the New York Post. “He asked if I think the Brooklyn Nets will win a championship,” Dinwiddie said, explaining what question he was asked by one of the kids at a recent team-related event. “Now, listen here: I don’t make guarantees. But of course I do. … KD is the best player in the league, right?” Once Durant returns from injury, the Nets are set to sport one of the league’s most formidable cores: Durant, Irving, Jarrett Allen, DeAndre Jordan, Caris LeVert, Joe Harris, Dinwiddie and more.
  • Former Sixers star Charles Barkley praised the team’s top-two young stars, Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid, in a recent interview with Michael Lee of The Athletic. “I’m a big Ben Simmons fan,” Barkley said. “And I want him to do like Magic Johnson and Michael Jordan. Keep working on his game, become a very good shooter, because if he keeps working on his jump shot, he’s going to be one of the best to ever do it. Joel, I expect him to be in the MVP conversation. I think he got mad at me because I suggested his conditioning wasn’t up to par, which it wasn’t. I know they try to be careful with him, because he is injury-prone, and that is why I think swimming would be great for him.”