Confirming multiple reports that have surfaced since the team was eliminated from the postseason on Sunday, Sixers general manager Elton Brand said today that there are no plans to shake up the roster by moving either Joel Embiid or Ben Simmons this offseason.
“I’m not looking to trade Ben or Joel,” Brand said, per Tim Bontemps of ESPN (Twitter link). “I’m looking to complement them better.”
While the 76ers have faced questions about how to maximize the Embiid/Simmons duo on the offensive end of the court, the team sounds committed to giving its next head coach a chance to solve that puzzle. As Brand suggests, finding the right complementary pieces to share the floor with the two All-Stars will be part of the equation too.
In his comments to reporters today, Brand also spoke in general terms about changes that might be coming to Philadelphia’s front office. Following the departure of former head of basketball operations Bryan Colangelo in 2018, the Sixers’ front office took a collaborative approach to decision-making, but Brand said on Tuesday that “we feel the collaboration days didn’t work” (Twitter link via Bontemps).
Brand, who is expected to retain decision-making control in the front office, added that he’ll be leading the coaching search and will present his choice to ownership. He also addressed what sort of executives the club may be looking to add to its basketball operations department, as Derek Bodner of The Athletic tweets.
“We’re strong in the strategic and analytic standpoint,” Brand said. “Get some more basketball minds in here. But all options are open.”
Here’s more on the Sixers:
- Some of the executives and coaches who spoke to Michael Scotto of HoopsHype about the Sixers believe that trading either Embiid or Simmons might be the right move for the franchise. One Eastern Conference GM said he’d trade Embiid because it’s easier to build a roster around Simmons, but multiple executives suggested that Simmons’ shooting woes would make him the more logical trade candidate. Of the respondents who made the case for keeping both players, most argued that it would be difficult to get fair value for either one in a trade, Scotto writes.
- Noting that managing the Sixers’ stars will be the primary challenge facing the team’s new head coach, Rich Hofmann of The Athletic weighs the pros and cons of Tyronn Lue, Jay Wright, Ime Udoka, and Dave Joerger, four candidates who have been linked to the position so far.
- The timing of the Knicks‘ head coaching search allowed them to secure Tom Thibodeau before other teams got a chance to pursue him, according to Marc Berman of The New York Post, who hears from a source that the Sixers held some appeal to Thibodeau (Twitter link).