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76ers Free Agency Frenzy (Part Two): Simmons, Ennis, O’Quinn and Shake

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Ben Simmons, Josh Richardson, Tobias Harris, Al Horford, Joel Embiid. If I told you THAT would be your 2019 76ers starting lineup a year ago would you have believed me? I’m leaning towards HELL NO.

The 76ers made a flurry of acquisitions in the first few hours of free agency, completely overhauling both their starting unit and their bench squad. If you want to read all about that, including the Jimmy Butler sign and trade, Al Horford’s fat new contract, along with the multiple other day one deals, go check out my first free agency article where I breakdown everything you need to know: https://thebrandedsports.com/2019/07/01/76ers-free-agency-frenzy-day-one-recap/. If you’re in fact all caught up with the first wave of Sixers FA moves, I’d like to now address some of the smaller, yet equally as important, deals Elton Brand made the last two days.

 

Kyle O’Quinn: One year, Veteran Minimum

First reported by Kyle Neubeck of the Philly Voice, the 76ers snatched up veteran big man Kyle O’Quinn on a one year deal. Being that it is a veteran minimum contract, it won’t count against our cap, but will come out to around $2-2.2million. O’Quinn is a seven year vet who spent time with the Magic, Knicks and Pacers. Not much to complain about here, Kyle is a 6’ 10” center who can rebound and play defense. Probably won’t see a whole lot of minutes with Embiid and Horford on the roster, but he’s significantly better defensively than Amir Johnson, Greg Monroe and Boban. Only other thing to note is this could mean Jonah Bolden is on the move, no word on that just yet, just rumors.

 

Ben Simmons: $170M/5 years 

Easily the biggest deal completed for the 76ers this offseason, no debate there. Elton Brand and the front office lock up their superstar PG to a 5 year max extension, averaging out to $34million per year. This is a bargain in a league where guys like Chris Paul and John Wall are making near 40 a year to be mediocre. Regardless of your opinion on Ben, he’s insanely talented and on pace to have a historic career, not to mention he’s still just 22 years old. He could literally never make a three his entire career and still go down as one of the best Point Guards in history. With all the Los Angeles rumors swirling around Simmons, it was crucial to lock him up ASAP.

 

James Ennis: $4.1M/2 years

I know this is an unpopular opinion among Philly fans but I don’t actually think Ennis is all that good. As a bench player for the 76ers he averaged just 5.3ppg in 16 minutes a game, while shooting 30% from three. In the playoffs his 3-point shooting dropped all the way down to a tragic 28%. The 76ers biggest need on the bench is shooting/floor spacing, and Ennis isn’t that. I would have much rather seen that money go to a better spot-up guy. Regardless, I love the fact he was willing to take a pay-cut to stay with the team. There is definitely something to be said about having players who WANT to play here.

 

Shake Milton: 4 Year Deal

Shake Milton, a 22 year old combo guard who was initially drafted by Dallas in 2018, had his two-way contract promoted to an official main roster deal Wednesday evening. The 4 year contract will likely use up most, if not all, of the remaining $2.2 million the Sixers had in cap space. I absolutely love this deal, Shake dominated the G-League in his time there last season, averaging 24.9ppg (4th highest in the league) and 4.9 assists per game, while also shooting 37% from three. Early into the offseason I started hearing rumblings of Shake being the potential backup Point Guard, this deal all but confirms it. Having a young, 6 foot 6, scoring ball-handler off the bench should be something exciting to watch for this season.

 

That’s going to pretty much wrap up the 76ers offseason moves this year. They can still add a piece or two via veteran minimums or trades, but it appears our rotation is pretty much set. It’s a really new lineup, definitely unique, and I’m super excited to see it action. Make sure to follow my Twitter to stay posted for any potential final 76ers moves. 

 

Twitter: @phillyinsider99

-David Esser via Philly Sports Insider

 

~stats taken from BasketBall Reference~

~image taken from nbl.com.au~

 

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