Sixers Are Back; NBA Reaches a Deal
It looks like the hometown five is returning.
The NBA and it's players reached a hand-shake agreement to return with three games on Christmas Day. As for the Sixers, they will begin camp on Dec. 9th.
The Sixers have a few questions this off-season to take care of, with the first being restricted free agent Thad Young. The 23-year old forward will most-likely be back with the team, saying of his impending free agency, "I definitely want to go back to Philly." Chances are the Sixers want him back.
The next order of business will be the status of both Andre Iguodala and Elton Brand. The two highest paid players on the team haven't produced like their contacts pay them to produce. Iguodala has value around the league, but the Sixers have stated for the past few seasons that they will not just give him away. With new ownership in place, maybe that plan changes, but the thinking here is that is doubtful.
As for Brand, who hasn't nearly lived up to his enormous contract, but he had a solid season in
2010-11, the Ssixers will have to just ride out his contract which expires after next season.
Evan Turner is an interesting piece, the second overall pick in last seasons draft has stated he wants the ball more this season, but the question will be how does that happen. While his play improved late in the season, will he get on the court anymore this season.
With both Lou Williams and Jodie Meeks in the fold along with Iguodala many will wonder where all the extra minutes will come for Turner. Meeks got most of the starts at the two guard but is probably better suited coming off the bench. Williams is instant offense off the bench, a role the Sixers would like to keep him in. He could also be a trade candidate with a relatively manageable contract.
At the center spot, Spencer Hawes is a restricted free agent and first round pick Nikola Vucevic. Hawes needs to get tougher both rebounding and on defense and must find more of an offensive game. Vucevic the biggest player in the draft and pairs a good jump-shot with a decent back-to-the-basket post game. His deficiencies come in space where his lack of lateral quickness and jumping ability get exposed, but he will get every opportunity to compete with Spencer Hawes for the starting job.
The key to the team right now is point guard Jrue Holiday.
He has become the teams most important player and seems to shine during the playoffs verses Miami. If Holiday can find a more consistent scorer around him and become less of a scorer and more of a distributor, the Sixers can take huge steps forward this season.
Are they going to with the 2011-2012 NBA title, not exactly, but this is a season where the fans need to see improvement. The team took big steps under Thorn and Collins last season, with new ownership in place lets just hope that the only thing that changes isn't the mascot.