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Sixers sign Shawn Long

The Philadelphia 76ers today announced that the team has signed forward-center Shawn Long.

Long first signed a 10-day contract with the Sixers on March 6 after being called up from the Delaware 87ers, the Sixers’ NBA Development League affiliate. He has appeared in four NBA games, averaging five points and three rebounds in eight minutes per game.

In 39 games with Delaware, he led the team with averages of 20 points and 11 rebounds in 30 minutes per game, while shooting 54 percent from the field. He was named a 2017 NBA D-League All-Star. Long originally signed with the Sixers on July 8, 2016 before being waived on October 24 and joining the Sevens.

Long played four collegiate seasons (2013-16) at the University of Louisiana-Lafayette, posting 17 points, 11 rebounds and two blocks in 30 minutes per game. As a senior, he was named 2016 Sun Belt Conference Player of the Year.

The Philadelphia 76ers today “called up” forward-center Shawn Long from the Delaware 87ers of the NBA Development League and signed him to a 10-day contact. Pursuant to the NBA’s roster hardship exception, the Sixers roster now stands at 16.

Long originally signed with the Sixers on July 8, 2016 before being waived on October 24 and joining the Sevens. In 39 games with Delaware, he leads the team with averages of 20 points and 11 rebounds in 30 minutes per game, while shooting 54 percent from the field. He was named a 2017 NBA D-League All-Star.

Long played four collegiate seasons (2013-16) at the University of Louisiana-Lafayette, posting 17 points, 11 rebounds and two blocks in 30 minutes per game. As a senior, he was named 2016 Sun Belt Conference Player of the Year.

Long will wear number 36 for the Sixers.

The Philadelphia 76ers have signed forward Justin Harper to a 10-day contract.

Harper, a two-time NBA D-League All-Star, most recently saw action with the Los Angeles D-Fenders, where he appeared in 37 games (all starts) and posted averages of 16 points and seven rebounds in 29 minutes per game, while shooting 40 percent from three-point range.

A season ago, Harper played in 42 games (26 starts) with L.A. and averaged 15 points and six rebounds per game as he shot 39 percent from beyond the arc. On February 24, 2016, he signed the first of two 10-day contracts with the Detroit Pistons.

A veteran of two NBA seasons and three D-League campaigns, Harper has also played internationally in Italy, Israel and France.

Harper was originally selected with the 32nd overall pick of the 2011 NBA Draft by the Cleveland Cavaliers before being traded to the Orlando Magic on draft night. He played in 14 games as rookie, averaging six minutes per contest.

Harper started all 37 games during his senior season at Richmond, averaging 18 points and seven rebounds, as he was named 2011 First Team All-Atlantic 10. That year, he helped lead the Spiders to 29-8 record and an Atlantic 10 title. Richmond, as a No. 12-seed, reached the Sweet 16 for the second time in school history.

Harper will wear number 30 for the Sixers.

Joel Embiid done for season, again

The Sixers were very careful with super-talented center Joel Embiid this season, playing him limited minutes, giving him plenty of rest during busy parts of the schedule, and trying to keep the big guy healthy.

But it didn’t work.

The team announced today that Embiid will miss the rest of the season. “The Process” is delayed once again.

The team recently announced that their other talented rookie, Ben Simmons, who hasn’t played this season, won’t be active until 2017-18.

Once again, the Sixers are about the future, not the present.

More on this: Joel Embiid injury update: out for season

Sixers waive Andrew Bogut

Sixers waive Andrew Bogut

The Philadelphia 76ers announced today the team has waived center Andrew Bogut.

Bogut was acquired as part of a trade with the Dallas Mavericks on February 23, 2017. He was never really going to be a part of the Sixers, so today’s news isn’t a huge surprise.

Bogut doesn’t score much, but he’s an excellent defender.

Joel Embiid bothered by knee

Well, this isn’t good. Sixers center Joel “The Process” Embiid is dealing with a lingering knee issue. Hoping for the best. Here’s CSN Philly reporting:

Joel Embiid bothered by knee

Joel Embiid on Monday will have an MRI on his injured left knee and is now listed as out indefinitely.

Embiid has been experiencing swelling and soreness in the left knee injury that has caused him to miss 16 out of the last 17 games. Bryan Colangelo announced back on Feb. 11 that Embiid has a minor meniscal tear. In his most recent press conference last Friday, Colangelo had targeted this Friday’s home game against the Knicks as a possibility for Embiid’s return. Now, that isn’t the case.

sixers trade nerlens noel

The Dallas Mavericks announced today that they have acquired forward-center Nerlens Noel from the Philadelphia 76ers in exchange for guard Justin Anderson, center Andrew Bogut and a 2017 protected first-round pick.

Noel (6-11, 220) holds career averages of 10.2 points, 7.6 rebounds, 1.6 assists, 1.7 steals, 1.6 blocks and 28.3 minutes per game in 171 games (140 starts) with Philadelphia.

The third-year man out of Kentucky is averaging 8.9 points, 5.0 rebounds, 1.4 steals, 0.9 blocks and 19.4 minutes per game in 29 games (seven starts) this season. He is shooting 61.1 percent (107-of-175) from the field this year.

A native of Malden, Mass., Noel was originally selected by the New Orleans Pelicans with the sixth overall pick in the 2013 NBA Draft. His rights were later traded to Philadelphia along with a future first-round pick in exchange for Jrue Holiday and Pierre Jackson.

In his lone season at Kentucky (2012-13), Noel averaged 10.5 points, 9.5 rebounds, 1.6 assists, 2.1 steals, 4.4 blocks and 31.9 minutes per game en route to earning First Team All-SEC, SEC Defensive Player of the Year and SEC Rookie of the Year honors. On Jan. 29, 2013, Noel set the UK single-game record with 12 blocked shots in a victory over No. 16 Ole Miss.

Noel suffered a torn ACL in a game against the Florida Gators on Feb. 12, 2013, ending his 2012-13 season. Despite the injury, Noel declared for the 2013 NBA Draft following his freshman year. He missed the entire 2013-14 NBA season recovering from knee surgery.

As a rookie in 2014-15, Noel averaged 9.9 points, 8.1 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 1.8 steals, 1.9 blocks and 30.8 minutes per game in 75 games (71 starts) while garnering NBA All-Rookie First Team honors.

The 22-year-old Noel was the top-rated player by both ESPNU recruiting and Scout.com coming out of high school and was rated the second-best prospect by Rivals.com. He will wear No. 3 with the Mavericks.

Anderson (6-6, 228) was drafted by Dallas with the 21st overall pick in the 2015 NBA Draft. In 106 games (11 starts) with the Mavericks, he averaged 5.1 points and 2.7 rebounds in 12.8 minutes per game.

Bogut (7-0, 260) was acquired by Dallas along with a future second-round pick from the Golden State Warriors on July 7, 2016 in exchange for a future conditional second-round pick. He averaged 3.0 points, 8.3 rebounds, 1.9 assists, 1.0 block and 22.4 minutes per game in 26 games (21 starts) with the Mavericks this season.

Mavs and Andrew Bogut never got to mesh

Here’s the Dallas Morning News discussing center Andrew Bogut, who never made his mark as a member of the Mavericks and is now set to be traded to the Sixers. Bogut played in 26 games for the Mavs, averaging 3.0 ppg and 8.3 rpg in 22.4 minutes per outing:

Mavs and Andrew Bogut never got to mesh

Andrew Bogut, we hardly knew ya.

The big Aussie with the bigger sense of humor blew through the Mavericks for two-thirds of a season, never quite fit on the court with Dirk Nowitzki and now is heading elsewhere, although nobody’s sure quite where.

It was a virtual guarantee that Philadelphia, to whom the Mavericks will trade Bogut as soon as the conference call with the NBA office takes place, will never put the 7-footer in a uniform. They will waive him if they can’t move him along. It’s likely the Mavericks are paying a chunk (if not all) of his remaining salary.
Bogut still has some tread on his tires, but it’s getting pretty well worn. The question is whether he can land in a place that can utilize him for 20 minutes a game and get the most of his skills.

Sixers, Hawks trade Ersan Ilyasova, Tiago Splitter

The Philadelphia 76ers have acquired center Tiago Splitter, a second-round pick, and the option to swap a second-round pick from the Atlanta Hawks in exchange for forward Ersan Ilyasova, President of Basketball Operations Bryan Colangelo announced today.

The Sixers will also receive a second-round pick from Atlanta (via Miami) and the right to swap the least favorable of the 2017 second-round picks received in the Sixers trade with the Utah Jazz with Atlanta’s 2017 second-round pick.

“I want to thank Ersan Ilyasova for his positive contributions to this organization both on and off the basketball court,” Colangelo said. “Ersan is a true professional whose daily examples of hard work, focus and consistency have helped facilitate the ongoing growth of our program and culture.”

“We are excited to welcome Ersan, and his family, to the Atlanta Hawks. He’s a high-character, proven veteran who we’ve liked for many years and believe fits well within our system,” Hawks President of Basketball Operations/Head Coach Mike Budenholzer said. “We also want to thank Tiago for his contributions on and off the court. We wish him all the best in the future.”

Ilyasova was acquired by Philadelphia on November 1, 2016 in a deal with Oklahoma City. In the midst of his ninth NBA season, he has appeared in 583 career games (353 starts) and holds averages of 11 points and six rebounds in 24 minutes per game. A native of Turkey, Ilyasova played in 53 games (40 starts) with the Sixers this season, averaging 15 points and six rebounds on 44 percent shooting from the field.

Splitter, a veteran of six NBA seasons, has appeared in 347 career games (153 starts) with San Antonio and Atlanta. He holds career averages of eight points and five rebounds in 19 minutes per game, while shooting 56 percent from the floor. Originally selected in the first round (28th overall) of the 2007 NBA Draft by the Spurs, the Brazilian native spent the first five seasons of his career in San Antonio (2010-15). During the Spurs’ run to the 2014 NBA title, Splitter saw action in all 23 playoff games (18 starts), posting eight points and six rebounds per contest.

Ben Simmons health update coming soon

The key piece of the Sixers’ future is center Joel Embiid, and if all goes as planned the other big piece is injured rookie Ben Simmons. Here’s CSN Philly reporting:

Ben Simmons health update coming Thursday

Thursday is significant for the Sixers beyond the trade deadline. It is also the day of Ben Simmons’ CT scan to evaluate how his right foot is healing.

“I feel like tomorrow at some point we’re all going to be able to lay out a more genuine plan for him,” Brett Brown said Wednesday. “I feel like we’re going to be good to go with some greater news and a more advanced detail of his plans after this scan.”

Once all parties involved assess the results, the team will provide an update, which may not be Thursday. Simmons has been sidelined all season after suffering a Jones fracture during the final scrimmage of training camp.

The Sixers resume practice on Wednesday and Ersan Ilyasova will look to be recharged and refocused when he hits the court in Camden. The veteran power forward is determined to find his rhythm after hitting a shooting snag prior to the All-Star break.

“I need it right now, just get away from basketball,” Ilyasova said of the time off following the Sixers’ final game before the break. “Obviously, the last week was kind of up and down. The season is long. Obviously, you have to get your mind out of it. It’s good timing.”

Ilyasova’s plans for the break included traveling to West Palm Beach, Florida, where he owns a home, to spend time with his wife and children who live in Milwaukee. He hoped unwinding with his loved ones would help him move beyond his struggles at the basket.

– CSN Philly

Jahlil Okafor trade rumors persist

With the emergence of Sixers center Joel Embiid, Jahlil Okafor has wound up on the trading block. No guarantee he gets moved, but Okafor has been mentioned in trade rumors for much of the season. Here’s the Philadelphia Inquirer with the latest:

Jahlil Okafor trade rumors persist

76ers center Jahlil Okafor had the same feeling most people had.

The thought was that Okafor was about to be traded once he didn’t play the past two games due on-going trade talks.

“I thought it would be a good chance,” said Okafor, responding to being asked if he thought he was gone. “When I’m not traveling with the team I was expecting something to happen.”

Instead, the second-year center is slated to come off the bench for the Sixers Wednesday night against the Boston Celtics at T.D. Garden. While trade talks continue, the team is not as close to trading the second-year center as it seemed to be in recent days.

Sixers have won 8 of last 10 games

Here’s the Philadelphia Inquirer reporting on the 76ers, who are playing very respectable basketball lately:

Sixers have won 8 of last 10 games

The Sixers are the talk of Philadelphia and are creating a huge buzz around the NBA, with just cause.

They won eight of 10 games heading into Saturday night’s matchup against the Atlanta Hawks here at the Philips Arena. Their 16-25 record through 41 games is the best since they went 17-24 during the 2012-13 season…

The Sixers have a legitimate NBA All-Star Game candidate and runaway rookie-of-the-year contender in Embiid. They have a coach in Brett Brown who has been a part of four NBA championships as a San Antonio Spurs assistant. And they should have the services of a passer extraordinaire in Ben Simmons, the first overall pick in the 2016 draft, sometime this season.

Still, Vegas lists the Sixers at 5,000-to-1 to win the NBA title. That’s understandable.

The Philadelphia 76ers signed guard Chasson Randle to a second 10-day contract today.

Randle has appeared in two games since being signed by the Sixers on January 9. He posted 10 points in 16 minutes in Monday’s win over the Bucks in Milwaukee.

Randle was most recently with the NBA D-League Westchester Knicks, where he appeared in 19 games and posted averages of 21 points, four rebounds, three assists and one steal in 32 minutes per game, while shooting 40% from three-point range.

Randle played four years at Stanford, posting career averages of 17 points, three rebounds, three assists and one steal in 144 career games (142 starts). He was named to the All-PAC 12 First Team his junior and senior seasons, and capped his collegiate career as Stanford’s all-time leading scorer with 2,375 points.

At this point, fans around the league have an opinion on Sixers center Joel Embiid. He’s on the map. It’s too soon to know how great he may become, but early signs pointing to stardom are very promising. Here’s Raptors coach Dwane Casey sharing his view, as reported by PhillySport:

Dwane Casey compares Joel Embiid to a young Shaq

Toronto Raptors coach Dwane Casey had high praise for 76ers center Joel Embiid, comparing him at a similar stage to 15-time all-star and four-time NBA champion Shaquille O’Neal.

“He is physical, has size, athletic ability, like a young Shaq coming into the league and Shaq didn’t shoot it like this young man,” Casey said before Wednesday’s game at the Wells Fargo Center against the Sixers.

Embiid entered the contest averaging 19.7 points, 7.7 rebounds and 2.43 blocked shots in 25.3 minutes per game.

Jahlil Okafor, professional scorer

One of the best things that could happen to the Sixers, aside from having all of their young talent healthy at the same time, would be for Jahlil Okafor to rise up and reach his potential. It’s been a down year for Okafor, but he definitely stepped up Saturday. Here’s CSN Philly reporting:

Jahlil Okafor, professional scorer

Jahlil Okafor’s string of four straight DNPs came to an end Saturday. He quickly made up for lost time at the basket.

Okafor scored a game-high 26 points (10 for 16 from the field, 6 for 11 from the line) with nine rebounds and a block in 36 minutes in the Sixers’ 109-93 loss to the Wizards…

Okafor got off to a hot start, scoring nine points in six first quarter minutes. He dropped another seven in the second. Okafor had a quiet third with four points — the Sixers only scored 15 in the quarter. He played the entire fourth quarter and added another six points.

“Jahlil Okafor is a professional scorer,” Brett Brown said. “For him to just jump into an NBA game and be given 35 minutes, him being very, very good fitness-wise, and for him to score like he scored at 21 years old, that’s Jahlil Okafor. That’s what he does.”

Sixers sign Chasson Randle to 10-day contract

The Philadelphia 76ers signed guard Chasson Randle to a 10-day contract today.

Randle was most recently with the NBA D-League Westchester Knicks, where he appeared in 19 games and posted averages of 21 points, four rebounds, three assists and one steal in 32 minutes per game, while shooting 40% from three-point range.

Prior to joining Westchester, he appeared in 21 games for ČEZ Nymburk of the Czech Republic’s National Basketball League, where he averaged 15 points, two rebounds, two assists and two steals per game, while helping the team win the 2015-16 league championship.

Randle played four years at Stanford, posting career averages of 17 points, three rebounds, three assists and one steal in 144 career games (142 starts). He was named to the All-PAC 12 First Team his junior and senior seasons, and capped his collegiate career as Stanford’s all-time leading scorer with 2,375 points.

Randle will wear number 5 for the Sixers.

Sixers waive Hollis Thompson

The Philadelphia 76ers waived Hollis Thompson today.

Thompson appeared in 31 games this season and averaged six points, three rebounds and one assist in 18 minutes per game.

Thompson was originally signed by the Sixers on September 24, 2013 and appeared in 256 games (82 starts), posting averages of eight points, three rebounds and one assist on 42% shooting from the field in 24 minutes per game.

With the move, the Sixers roster currently stands at 14 players.

Gerald Henderson struggling with hip pain

Gerald Henderson’s left-hip pain was too intolerable for him remain on the court.

The Philadelphia 76ers shooting guard was laboring on the Golden 1 Center with 8 minutes, 58 seconds remaining in Monday night’s 102-100 setback to the Sacramento Kings. Henderson spoke with Sixers coach Brett Brown, who basically came on the court to call a timeout as a way to get his veteran leader out of the game.

– Philadelphia Inquirer

The 2017 Sixers draft situation

In possession of their own pick and the Los Angeles Lakers’ top-three protected pick, the 76ers will probably be picking twice in the lottery. The good news for the Sixers is that this draft is shaping up to be a pretty deep one. Even better news is that it’s deep with what they need: guards and wings.

Markelle Fultz is the front-runner to be the No. 1 overall pick. He’d be an excellent fit as a point guard who is more of a scorer/shooter (49 percent from three) than a facilitator to play with Simmons (not to say Fultz is a poor passer). Malik Monk of Kentucky is an undersized combo guard who, like Fultz, can light up the scoreboard. Lonzo Ball of UCLA is another combo guard with the ability to shoot (43 percent from three) and dish (8.3 assists).

Then there’s athletic wings like high-flying Kansas freshman Josh Jackson who can do a little bit of everything. The ACC has two long, athletic wings that can wreak havoc on both ends in Florida State’s Isaac Austin and Duke’s Jayson Tatum. Landing one of these guys would give the Sixers scary length and a potentially disruptive defense.

– CSN Philly

Quick Take: At some point, two things have to happen for the Sixers: 1) Full health. 2) A clear indication that their season will be one of serious competition, and not riding the bottom of the standings anymore. Perhaps that’ll happen in 2017-18.

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