The title is correct. Nevermind what the Oklahoma City Thunder, Minnesota Timberwolves or the Houston Rockets were able to do. The 2017 NBA Offseason is all about the Philadelphia 76ers. How can a team who didn’t end up with Paul George, Chris Paul, Jimmy Butler or Blake Griffin possibly be in front of the teams who did? Easy, they are building while the others are hoping.
The Timberwolves got better with the addition of Butler but took a step back with the trade of Ricky Rubio. Jeff Teague is a decent player but the Wolves need a facilitator and a perimeter threat to make the Wolves winners. The Houston Rockets are making moves but can Paul and James Harden co-exist in the same backcourt? Both players work best with the ball in their hands and last I checked it was only one ball allowed on the court. The Warriors are just resigning their own players and the Cleveland Cavaliers have yet to make a splash.
The Boston Celtics are crapping out although they may end up with Gordon Hayward by the time this article is published. While that will be a great signing– will it be enough? The Toronto Raptors are shelling out too much money to players who choked the last two postseasons. Most of the moves that were made we players remaining with their same team but with larger paychecks.
This is why the Philadelphia 76ers are winning the offseason.
It started with a trade right before the NBA Draft that landed them the No. 1 pick in which they took Markelle Fultz. What player of importance did the 76ers have to give up? How much money did they use from their salary cap to do so? Look at the Warriors. They have THE Super Team in the NBA but for how long? Can they continue to pay players close to $30M a year and still stay relevant? The Rockets and their moves are great but look at the money spent and is it enough to beat the Warriors? So adding Chris Paul who may have come from a better team in L.A. could all be for nothing but another 2nd Round exit. The same can be said for the Raptors. Kyle Lowry for 3 years and Ibaka for 3 years. Good players but those long-term deals are not team or salary friendly.
The Sixers are catching heat for signing J.J. Redick for $23M. That’s a lot but guess what– it’s a one-year deal that will come off the books and the same for the one-year $11M deal for Amir Johnson. The 76ers have their young core for their starting five–including Redick, now they’re just giving away cash to gain it all back next season to make a run at other Free Agents.
And should the 76ers stumble this year then they can flip Redick, Johnson and possibly Jahlil Okafor at the trade deadline for future draft picks. No huge financial loss for them. If Teague doesn’t live up to his contract– guess what? The Wolves are stuck with him. The same for Griffin, Lowry, Patty Mills, Ibaka, Otter Porter Jr and more.
The 76ers are thinking long-term while the other teams are thinking win now. But despite these huge contracts going out– who has done enough to beat the Warriors who basically will send the SAME team out who just embarrassed the league?
Big contracts for teams who are all hoping it al pans out while the 76ers are spending to fill roster position for the names on the front of the jersey instead of the back.