Shockingly true: Elton Brand will be a Sixer !!!!!
Posted by Ricky - Sixers4guidos on July 9, 2008
This morning I was simply extatic in reading that Ed Stefanski brought us Elton Brand, showing what a real GM should do. Now before I wrote my take about this move, let me remind you the major steps Stefanski took before closing this deal:
1) last season, traded Korver to Utah to clear cap space for this summer: around 4 mill off the books. Remember many fans complained then, but they should have known that the move should have been judged only some months later…
BTW readers of this blog know I was, am and will always be a great Korver fan, but this time I was with our management, waiting/hoping for the eventual big move. I looked at the big picture, for once !!
2) seriously courted Josh Smith, involving even Philly’s mayor (!) and creating a smokescreen that probably helped him reaching the real goal
3) traded Carney and Booth to Minnesota in order to be able to increase the offer(s)
4) finally, signed Brand when everybody thought he was going to end up elsewhere (Golden State, Clippers etc)
I call this a great job by a GM who knows his stuff. (Ouh, and by the way move 1) was decisive in making Thaddeus Young getting some minutes… how did that turn out? Not surprisingly, he’s laughing, you see)
Now about Brand as a Sixer:
I say he is the big man we really needed. I asked Stefanski to sign Josh Smith, impressed by his potential, but it’s not like I was putting him ahead of Brand. They are very different players, but both would have been good in this team, in different ways of course. Brand gives us the desperately needed back-to-the-basket scoring, even more rebounding and a team/leader attitude that Smith probably (still) lacks.
Now let me reply to many things I’ve read around the web today:
“He’s old”. WRONG. He’s 29 and still in his prime. His contract is for five years, meaning he will be a Sixer until he’s 34 y/o. He will not be old for current NBA standards. Just to name one, Shaq is 36 and he’s signed for TWO more years…
“He will be overpaid”. WRONG. He will reportedly sign for 82 millions in 5 years: it means an average of 16.4 millions per year. I still don’t know if the contract is frontloaded or not, anyway the price seems pretty fair given the player’s value.
“He’s coming off a bad injury and never will the player he was before”. PARTIALLY TRUE. This is the risky part. He was supposed to lose the entire 2007/2008 season but he recovered earlier than expected and came back to play the last eight games of the regular season. He played pretty well, also. Was it only a way to showcase himself before becoming a free agent? It could be, but remember NOBODY thought he would have opted out then. But he did it.
I guess time will tell if this move will work or not, all I can say now is: THANK YOU, ED STEFANSKI !!!
With Brand Sixers could jump into the Top 4 of the Eastern Conference, behind Boston and Detroit, up there with Orlando and Cleveland. It will be Cheeks’ job to put the pieces together, as for now this team only needs a good three point shooter to be extremely competitive in the conference.
But all the Vujacics, the Houses, the Delfinos, the Kleizas, the Brent Barrys of this world now have another, big reason to come to Philly… (hopefully I will cover this in one of the next posts, together with the possible log jam at PF, with Brand, Evans, Jason Smith and Speights)
Billy King is gone, guys, and it shows. Now we only need to BRING THE OLD SIXERS UNIFORMS BACK !!!!!