QUESTIONABLE MOVES

Posted by: Philadunkia
12/13/11 9:41 am EST
I want to make this very clear:  I want Thaddeus Young to be a Philadelphia 76er. 
 
I love his game, his versatility and what he provides off the bench.  Thad is a tough match-up for opposing defenses because of his ability to play both forward positions.  He’s great in transition and score at a high level for a player off the bench.  For several years to come, Young will be amongst the 6th man of the year candidates each season. 
 
 
With all that being said, the Sixers overpaid for his services. 
 
Honoring Thaddeus Young with a five year $42-million contract was baffling to say the least.  It’s not like Thad was an unrestricted free agent, where he can go anywhere without the Sixers organization having a say.  As we all know, Thad was a restricted free agent, and we had the ability to match any contract that he’s offered from another franchise. 
 
Yet Rod Thorn failed to let that CBA designed scenario play out.
 
Finally, consider that few teams, if any, we’re interested in signing the veteran forward.  ESPN insider John Hollinger sums the Sixers conundrum up well:
 
“…my issue here is with the Sixers’ failure to take advantage of an opportunistic situation. Nobody is sitting on their cap space for three days in this environment, which means the Sixers had all the leverage and probably left about $10 million on the table … especially since a five-year deal from Philly could be trumped only by four years at much greater annual money from another team. If nobody wants to sign Marc Gasol or DeAndre Jordan to an offer sheet, they aren’t going to start piling in for Thaddeus Young”
 
To sum up Hollinger:  The Sixers overpaid at minimum an extra $10 million and coughed up an extra player-option year.  Sixers president Rod Thorn essentially forked over a chunk of cash without Thad even testing the free agent market.  Why not let Thad go out into free agency, get the best offer and then bring it back to Philadelphia?  As a restricted free agent, this would’ve allowed us to asses his value and pay him appropriately.  We’d have the ability to match any contract offered his way.  That’s the way the system is designed to work. 
 
So how can anyone defend Thorn paying Thaddeus that much money before he’s even tendered an offer?  This deal is simply unacceptable.  I want Thaddeus Young to be donning a Sixers uni just as much as the next guy, but we overpaid him handsomely.  And as Hollinger mentioned, it’s not like NBA teams were lining up at the door begging to sign Thad to a big contract.  The other concerning matter is this scenario eerily resembles the contract that was awarded to Samuel Dalembert by the previous regime. 
 
If you recall, former Sixers GM Billy King signed restricted free agent Samuel Dalembert to a similarly obnoxious contract prior to the 2005-06 season.  It was a contract that would see Dalembert collect approximately 65 million dollars over six years (five with the Sixers, one with the Kings).  Just like the Thaddeus Young deal, this was fairly excessive at the time.  Also just like in the recent Thad signing, King never allowed “Big Sammy” to test the open market and find out his true value.  At the time of the Dalembert signing, Billy King caught a lot of ridicule; whereas Thorn has caught very little heat for his premature move.  As we all remember that Dalembert deal went from a bad signing to an albatross of a contract as Sammy’s 76ers career progressed.  While I don’t believe Tha’ds career arc will plummet the way Dalembert’s did, I still have no idea why Thorn has be given a free pass here.
 
And The Thad signing is not the only questionable move of the Sixers shortened off-season.  Remember Tony Battie?  Yup, the same guy who sparingly played off the bench but looked completely inept offensively when he did.  Well, the Sixers are bringing him back.  Not necessarily an essential move, but in my opinion, Reggie Evans (played with Sixers from 2007-2009) would’ve been a better fit. 
 
Battie will likely be warming the bench for the majority of the season.  Evans on the other hand, could’ve been the third reserve off the bench right behind Thaddeus Young and Lou Williams.  Evans would’ve greatly benefited our frontcourt with strong defensive play and as a premier rebounder.  Last season, in an injury-plagued year, Evans averaged 11.5 rebounds per game as a Toronto Raptor.
 
Signing Battie and overpaying for Thad, is not a great start to the season.  It’s not like these moves are devastating to our roster and a potential postseason slot, however, they’re neither encouraging.  Battie is limited offensively with little upside as a player at the age of 35.  Young had no offers around the league and likely could have been signed for 10 million dollars and a year less.  And don’t get me started on the Hawes signing.  Simply questionable moves on the president’s part.   
 
Rod Thorn, I sure hope you know what you’re doing because none of these moves will garner much support from Philadunkia nation.

 
 
 

14 Responses to “QUESTIONABLE MOVES”

  1. phillydude
    13. December 2011 at 13:01

    I’ve actually found it refreshing to NOT see the Sixers on the various media outlets, fighting for free agents. While other teams have 5-7 players under contract, the 76 have pretty much a full boat, and all are players who are familiar with the system here. I’m favoring the young legs and rested veterans to help the team jump out to an early division lead.

  2. Philadunkia
    13. December 2011 at 14:26

    Phillydude,

    We agree that having young players who are familiar with the system will help the Sixers greatly this season.

    But Battie is not young and he doesn’t provide the rebounding help this team needs. We love the Thad signing, but again the extra year / $10million we gave Thad could come back to hurt us in the long run. And Hawes while young and familiar with Doug’s system plays too far from the basket (Collins has complained about this element of his game), doesn’t have a clue on defense and doesn’t rebound for a 7-footer.

    We’re being picky in our analysis of these moves, but we think if you’re honest, you’ll see we are correct in our thoughts.

    Thanks for reading and commenting.

    C. Smith

  3. Dave
    13. December 2011 at 16:18

    The reason to sign a restricted free agent before he’s received an offer sheet is if you think he will eventually receive an offer sheet for more than you’re offering.

    Not saying he would have gotten one, but who’s to say Golden State, Indiana, Denver, or Sacramento wouldn’t have gone after Thad after striking out on their top choices?

    The better question is if Thad is worth this money regardless of what others would have paid. Is this a bad contract on its own merits and will it hamper us in the future?

    But hey, at least the new owners aren’t stripping the team of all its assets in order to flip it. Good sign for the future in that regard.

  4. joe
    13. December 2011 at 16:43

    multiple experts had young going around 8 million a year and collins was afraid that a team with a lot of cap space was going to offer 9-10 million a year. we all know collins loves young and he didn’t want to risk 1 team reaching for him.

  5. T. Martin
    13. December 2011 at 18:24

    Quite simply if Igoudala or Brand is traded, cut or otherwise can’t play then Young’s contract isn’t bad at all (and neither of them will be around for all five years of Young’s deal). $8mil for a starter isn’t unreasonable and frankly I have more of an issue with Lou Williams getting $5mil/year for what he brings to the table when he’s more easily replaceable.

  6. Irons
    13. December 2011 at 18:43

    Battie is an after thought. We have a questionable front court. Hawes will start, after that we have a rookie and Speights behind him. I heard rumors of Speights being traded. If that is the case you need to add depth at the position. Battie didn’t cost much as the Sixers don’t have much to spend. Evans is not the answer. He has hands like feet and disrupts the flow of the game. Thad is only 23. He is still growing as a player and may be able to make a switch to the four at some point over the next two years. If the Sixers can show they are a contender through the first two months of the season you make a move to solidify the lineup at that point.(I state this as a strategy for building a team, not a definite.) Dalembert is a clown and plays like he is wearing makeup. You cannot compare his contract with Thad’s. You have already stated the positive things Young can do for the team. I believe the Sixers are over paying for what Young can become, in addition to what he already provides.

  7. Murphy
    13. December 2011 at 19:41

    Your over reacting. Thad Young is only 23 with experience and potential a rare combination, and at some point in his career could be a starter. I could understand this logic in a couple years if it’s not working out but not right after he signs. Deandre Jordan got over paid by the worriors and the clippers had to match a horrific offer sheet. He’s making 10 mil+ a year Thad is only making 8.4 and last time I checked he is better than Deandre. So what if they let him go out someone like denver threw money at him just so they could reach 85% of the cap. What then? You would be writing that was a bad contract to match and they should have let him walk. His contract is not even close to what Dalembert got. It shouldn’t even be compared! Do your homework bro.

  8. Cj
    13. December 2011 at 20:14

    Not sure what got your panties in a bunch with the hawes signing but he signed his qualifying offer, not a multi-year deal… You would rather go into the season with the front court depth of Vucevic and the aforementioned Battie?

  9. JB
    14. December 2011 at 02:18

    There were plenty of teams still under the minimum cap of the new CBA, just because it didnt happen right away doesnt mean it wasnt going to happen. You act like they gave the kid $142M. He would just be coming out of college right now, his potential isnt even touched yet. in 3 years $8M is going to be an out right crime for this kid. Everyone has their opinions but long term it was smart money and lets remember, Young didnt have to sign the deal either! Battie is a body, a practice body. Who cares about that? You are way too critical and way too short sighted for a sports blog.

  10. KenzoSal19134
    14. December 2011 at 04:10

    I think you’re making a big deal over nothing because Rod Thorn made the smart move here. I too read the Hollinger Sixers preview and scrunched my face the same way I did when I read this article. Thad Young’s contract is about right in todays NBA. Jeff Green just got a 9 mil deal and Thads better. Caron Butler at 31 got a 3 year 24 mil dollar deal and he’s nowhere near as effective as Thad is and Caron’s only going to decline.
    Thads gonna make as much this year as Nocioni who will rarely see court time. Aaron Affalo is about to get a 50 mil dollar contract for 5 years. So theres no reason to think this is a bad deal. Just because Thad didn’t sign an offer sheet doesn’t mean other teams weren’t throwing numbers at him. One of the teams interested in signing him was Golden State who just signed Jordan to a 4 year 42 mil offer sheet.
    If you let another team sign him to an offer sheet first you’re def going to overpay because another team is always going to pitch high a restricted free agent in hopes their team won’t match.
    The Sixers just locked up one of the most athletic and efficient scorers in the league who happens to still only be 23 and is only going to get better. I love this move.

  11. Nearphilly
    14. December 2011 at 13:04

    Maybe they sought to resign him because he’s arguably their 2nd post option. Hawes and Battie are soft, Speights isn’t much better and is (allegedly) dumb as a rock, and Iggy certainly isn’t a post presence. Brand is the only consistent low block starter, and Young is the only guy who comes off the bench that really plays productively in the post. That said, they still overpaid for him, especially with no other offers on the table.

  12. G
    14. December 2011 at 14:33

    I WAS THINKING THE SAME THING ABOUT BATTIE. YOU MEAN TO TELL ME THERE ISNT ANOTHER BIG MAN OUT THERE THATS YOUNGER WITH SOME UPSIDE THEN RE SIGNING TONY BATTIE. I JUST DONT GET IT. BUT GO SIXERS.

  13. Kevin
    14. December 2011 at 14:33

    Thad has earned his money and he’s still so young. I see ni problem in this move.

  14. Sean
    15. December 2011 at 13:59

    Philadunkia,

    I think Sixers get a C grade for the Young signing. It’s not a great deal you are looking for, which would be around $6-7M per year. But, at the same time, it’s not a horrible deal, which would be around $9-10M. It’s about fair price for both parites. I don’t think the great deal you are looking for NEVER exist for someone who’s just 23 with great offensive potential… Please provide a comparable if you can think of any… That a player in simular situation as Young that was underpaid…

    I think we need Young, but with this deal, I also think it’s time to move Iguodala. I think they’ll be trading him mid-season when his value will be high. I think Iguodala will player much better this year compared to last and a lot of contenders would want him.

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