September 29, 2023

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76ers expected to sign Kelly Oubre Jr. to one-year deal, per source: How he fits in Philadelphia

76ers expected to sign Kelly Oubre Jr. to one-year deal, per source: How he fits in Philadelphia

The Philadelphia 76ers are expected to sign forward Kelly Oubre Jr. to a one-year free agent contract, a league source confirmed Monday. ESPN first reported the news. Here’s what you need to know:

The athleteReal-time analysis:

How did Philadelphia get Oubre?

Oubre was hoping to cash in after averaging more than 20 points per game in Charlotte last season, but with the Hornets not interested in re-signing him after drafting Brandon Miller with the second pick, he has had trouble finding suitors at a higher price point. With camps opening in two weeks, he decided to take the Bird on a minimum deal from a contender — along with a lot of potential minutes in a high-flying wing rotation — and try to build his market for next summer. — Hollinger

What this means for the Sixers

While Oubre plays more as a scorer and has been an inconsistent shooter throughout his career (33.0 percent from 3 in his career, 31.4 percent last season), he is a dynamite transition player and gives the Sixers the option to play more aggressive lineups offensively, especially toward the end of games. Moving Tobias Harris to fourth and playing Oubre third makes more sense against bigger teams than doing the same with D’Antoni Milton, especially since Oubre is a credible on-ball defender. After seeing Boston largely ignore P.J. Tucker in the playoffs last season, this could be the right antidote for new Sixers coach Nick Nurse.

It goes without saying that Oubre’s ability to score and enjoy minutes at both wing positions would also likely soften the blow from any Harden holdup and/or eventual trade. Wing depth has been a sore spot for this team for years, but Oubre could be a candidate for the Sixth Man Award if everything goes in Philadelphia.

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Philadelphia will also need to clear a roster spot for Oubre before Opening Day, as they now have 16 players under contract. Danny Green and Filip Petrusev have partially guaranteed deals, while Montrezl Harrell is likely out for the season after tearing her ACL in August. Barring a trade, it looks like one of these three will be the odd man out. — Hollinger

Dramatic story

Oubre, the No. 15 pick in the 2015 NBA Draft, has career averages of 12.8 points and 4.4 rebounds.

He spent the first three years of his career with the Washington Wizards before moving to the Phoenix Suns. Oubre also played for the Golden State Warriors prior to his two seasons in Charlotte.

Required reading

(Photo: Neil Redmond/USA Today)