March 23, 2023

Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

The 76ers have landed their man!

P.J. Tucker and the 76ers are expected to finalize a three-year, $33.2 million deal. The Athletic’s Shams Charania first reported the news. 

This is Tucker’s second time with Sixers’ president of basketball operations Daryl Morey and James Harden. The trio spent three great seasons together in Houston. The 2017-18 Houston Rockets won 65 games in the regular season and led Game 7 of the Western Conference Finals against the Warriors by 11 points at halftime, but Houston missed 27 straight three-pointers in the loss. 

Tucker won his first title with the Milwaukee Bucks in 2021 and was close to another Finals trip this year with the Heat — the Heat beat the Sixers in Round 2 with Tucker playing a valuable role in the series. At 37 years old, Tucker is looking to claim his second championship in the City of Brotherly Love.

It is quite obvious both Harden and Joel Embid appreciate Tucker’s value outside of the traditional box score stats. In describing why he would like to see the Sixers acquire tough, physical players this offseason after their Game 6 defeat to Miami, Embiid named Tucker.

One of Tucker’s best attributes is that he’s special in terms of both readiness and ability to defend stars. He’s a low-usage, limited offensive player, but Tucker is open to shoot open jumpers and made a career-high 41.5% of his threes last season.

While 37 isn’t old outside of basketball, age and health-related questions are reasonable for any NBA player in his late 30s. At the moment, Tucker has a stable reputation. He’s played in 82 games on three occasions. Also, giving Tucker a three-year deal is questionable. It will be up when he is 40, and he will earn $33.2 million which is a lot for an aging and older player.

The Sixers made two other signings here in the early stages of free agency. Danuel House agreed to a two-year, $8.5M deal. And G Trevelin Queen agreed to a two-year, $8.5 million contract with the Sixers. Everyone Morey (former Rockets president) has signed so far have been former Rockets. Seems Morey loves reunions.

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