Bryan Colangelo officially just took a big step forward in The Process by signing veteran shooting guard J.J. Redick to a one-year, $23 million deal, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
By bringing Redick on board, Colangelo — Philadelphia’s general manager — addresses an obvious need for three-point shooting while at the same time adding veteran leadership to a young core.
In this year’s NBA Draft, Colangelo and Philadelphia traded up from the third pick to the first in order to select Markelle Fultz — an incredibly talented prospect who can play both guard positions. The thought process behind that move was to surround 2016 No. 1 pick Ben Simmons — a notably gifted passer with an errant jump shot — with weapons that he could open the floor up for.
Enter, J.J. Redick, a career 41.5 percent three-point shooter.
At first glance, there doesn’t seem to be a loser in this potential deal. Redick, 33 years old, is now able to cash out after making just over seven million dollars last season with the Los Angeles Clippers. For the Sixers, they get a valuable and capable player with a needed skill who can mentor their younger players, all the while not tying up heavy money for the future when they’ll eventually need to consider extending their homegrown talent.
What this deal ultimately allows for Philadelphia is a chance to turn over a new leaf in their rebuilding process. By adding Fultz and Redick to a core of Simmons, and Rookie of the Year finalists Joel Embiid and Dario Saric, the roster now has enough pure talent and balance to make a decent playoff push in a weakening Eastern Conference.
As a result of the Indiana Pacers’ decision to deal Paul George to the Oklahoma City Thunder, they are potentially out of next season’s playoff picture. Additionally, the Chicago Bulls, who were the conference’s eighth seed with a 41-41 record last season, traded their star player as well when they sent Jimmy Butler to Minnesota on draft night. Over the course of the last few weeks, the teams who occupied the back end of the playoff picture in the East no longer seem to be a serious factor for next year’s campaign. Those particular developments, coupled with Philadelphia’s talented youth movement and calculated signing, leave a window to grab a postseason appearance for the first time since 2012.
Boasting a roster that includes Simmons, Embiid, Saric, Fultz, Redick, Robert Covington, Jerryd Bayless, Jahlil Okafor, T.J. McConnell, Nik Stauskas and Justin Anderson, the 76ers now look like fairly threatening to the middle-of-the-road teams in the Eastern Conference.
The big pay raise is a nice move for Redick, but it is an even better move for the Sixers and showed that the time is now in Philadelphia. The signing of Redick signals that The Process has officially shifted gears.
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