Sixers center Joel Embiid isn’t concerned that the team missed out on signing LeBron James and trading for Kawhi Leonard, according to Ian Begley of ESPN. Even though Philadelphia didn’t add much star power this summer, Embiid believes a deal that brought in Wilson Chandler and the expected improvement of Markelle Fultz will be enough.
“I don’t think it matters, big free agent or not. My goal going into the offseason was to get better,” Embiid said. “I want to win the MVP. I feel like at the end of the day it might be an individual award, but when I play better, the team also does. I feel like if I’m an MVP candidate or if I win the MVP, that means we are on another level.”
The Sixers were able to re-sign starting guard J.J. Redick and will bring back most of the team that won 52 games last year.
There’s more from the Atlantic Division:
- Kenneth Faried doesn’t think of himself as a salary dump after being traded from the Nuggets to the Nets, relays Brian Lewis of The New York Post. Faried played just 32 games in Denver last season, and his $13.7MM salary for 2018/19 was pushing the team well into luxury tax territory. “The Nuggets wanted to go in a different direction,” Faried said Wednesday at an introductory press conference. “Brooklyn decided, ‘Hey, let’s pick up a still-able, still-capable player who can go out and produce and lead a team and do the things he’s done before.’ … They believed in me, took this chance to trade for me, and I’m excited to be here and produce.”
- Sean Marks has made several shrewd moves since taking over as Nets GM, but the Allen Crabbe trade may have been a mistake, according to a story on NetsDaily. The Trail Blazers matched Brooklyn’s four-year, $75MM offer sheet for Crabbe in 2016, then dealt him to the Nets a year later because of luxury tax concerns. Marks traded Andrew Nicholson to Portland in exchange for Crabbe, but he may have been able to extract more from the Blazers considering their financial position.
- The Raptors are adjusting their roster to fit new coach Nick Nurse’s preference for the modern style of the NBA, notes Dave Zarum of SportsNet. Nurse places more emphasis on 3-point shooting, with Leonard and Danny Green adding to a dangerous group of long-distance shooters.