What Joel Embiid’s max contract extension means for 76ers: An open championship window, a premium on shooting

All-Star middle Joel Embiid agreed to a max contract extension with the 76ers this week that may preserve the affable massive man in Philadelphia by 2026, not less than. Embiid has clearly established himself as one of the crucial dominant gamers in all the NBA, and he got here in second in MVP voting behind Nuggets middle Nikola Jokic final season. With the previous lottery choose now locked up for the foreseeable future, the Sixers will proceed to attempt to construct a championship workforce round Embiid. 

Here is a take a look at what his new contract extension means for the Sixers transferring ahead. 

1. Philadelphia’s championship window will stay open 

So long as Embiid is wholesome and continues to play at — or close to — the extent that he did final season, the Sixers will proceed to be within the dialog within the Japanese Convention. He is that good. By the primary 260 video games of his profession, Embiid has averaged extra factors per 36 minutes (29.3) than another participant in NBA historical past, and he boasts one of the crucial numerous talent units that the league has seen. 

Embiid is at present 27 years previous, and he is now underneath contract with the Sixers for the following six years — that is possible the majority of his prime enjoying days, which implies that Philadelphia has till then to construct a title workforce across the star middle. It is as much as the entrance workplace to maximise the remainder of Embiid’s prime. Gamers like him do not come round daily. 

The Sixers have been unable to assemble a title workforce round Embiid thus far, however not due to an absence of effort. The workforce has made a mess of strikes over the previous a number of seasons in an effort to seek out the suitable puzzle items to slot in round Embiid, however that puzzle nonetheless seems to be a piece in progress. Nonetheless, the Sixers have made the convention semifinals in three of the previous 4 seasons, and twice they’ve stretched the sequence to seven video games. Clearly, they’re going to should be higher transferring ahead if the workforce goes to make its first convention finals look since 2001, however locking Embiid up for the following half-decade is a stable begin. 

2. Trio of Embiid, Simmons, Harris locked up for the following three seasons

Philadelphia’s trio of Embiid, Ben Simmons and Tobias Harris is now locked up by 2024, as all three gamers are underneath contract for the following three seasons, not less than. Tobias Harris nonetheless has three years remaining on the five-year, $180 million deal that he signed with the Sixers in 2019, whereas Simmons nonetheless has 4 years left on the five-year, $170 million extension he inked throughout the identical summer season as Harris’ signing. Neither deal features a participant possibility. Embiid is now underneath contract with the Sixers for the following 5 seasons not less than, six on the most — the ultimate 12 months of his new extension features a participant possibility.

Clearly, a commerce is feasible nicely earlier than ’24, probably even possible given the entire hypothesis surrounding Simmons’ future in Philadelphia following his underwhelming efficiency within the postseason. Nevertheless, till one is made, it’s going to proceed to be largely as much as Embiid, Simmons and Harris to push the Sixers so far as they will go, as these three gamers take up an enormous chunk of Philadelphia’s cap house transferring ahead. 

Through the 2021-22 season, these three gamers will mix to make over $98 million. That quantity will exceed $106 million the next season. The NBA has set the wage cap at $112 million and $119 million for these two seasons, respectively. So, Philadelphia’s capability to improve the roster round Embiid, Simmons and Harris will proceed to be restricted. Because of this these guys are going to need to do the heavy lifting if Philadelphia is [finally] going to achieve its lofty potential as a workforce. 

3. Taking pictures and floor-spacing will proceed to be at a premium for Philly

Just about any time {that a} workforce is constructed round a dominant massive man, particularly in as we speak’s NBA, it is necessary for that workforce to encompass the mentioned participant with taking pictures. The Sixers aren’t any exception right here. Embiid must play with guys that may create house for him to function within the submit. If defenders respect the shot-making capability of the perimeter gamers round Embiid, it makes it a lot tougher for them to sag off of their assignments and assist down on Embiid. Plus, he wants guys round him that may join on catch-and-shoot alternatives, as Embiid generates quite a lot of these for his teammates on account of the truth that he is constantly double-teamed when he receives the ball in submit place. This clearly is not misplaced on Philadelphia’s entrance workplace. 

From JJ Redick and Marco Belinelli to Furkan Korkmaz, Danny Green, and Seth Curry, the Sixers have made it a precedence to curate rosters replete with floor-spacers round Embiid and so they might want to proceed to take action. It isn’t a coincidence that Embiid had his finest season final 12 months after the workforce changed clunky suits Al Horford and Josh Richardson within the beginning lineup with elite shooters in Curry and Inexperienced, or that the workforce jumped from sixth to first within the Japanese Convention standings after these adjustments had been made. Plus, so long as Simmons stays on the roster, floor-spacing turns into much more necessary for Philly, given the truth that he hasn’t but developed right into a taking pictures menace himself. 

4. Backup middle will proceed to be an necessary position for the Sixers

Embiid is an entire participant when he is on the ground. He can get it performed on each ends of the courtroom, he can rating from the paint and from the perimeter, and he is environment friendly. If there’s one knock about what Embiid brings to a workforce, it is his availability. As dominant as Embiid is, he has a critical historical past on the subject of harm points and, as such, the Sixers wish to err on the facet of warning on the subject of their prized massive man. Embiid has by no means averaged greater than 33.7 minutes per recreation over the span of a season — he averaged 31.1 final season — and he has additionally by no means appeared in additional than 64 video games in a season. In different phrases, even with Embiid, the Sixers have quite a lot of minutes out there on the middle spot. As such, the backup middle spot has turn into an especially necessary place for the workforce. 

Whoever occupies that position finally ends up seeing fairly main minutes, and thus must be a productive participant. The Sixers realized this the onerous approach by making an attempt to fill the position with guys like Amir Johnson and Kyle O’Quinn up to now, then seeing the workforce’s manufacturing on each ends drop off of a cliff when these guys had been in. That is the rationale the workforce shelled out a four-year, $109 million deal for Al Horford in 2019. They seen him as a man that might play alongside Embiid for stretches, and in addition fill in on the middle spot when Embiid was out. 

Horford proved to be an in poor health slot in Philadelphia, however the rationale behind his signing was nonetheless sound — the Sixers want a participant that they will belief behind their star middle. They went with Dwight Howard final season, and Andre Drummond will fill the position through the ’21-22 marketing campaign. Each are former All-Stars and nonetheless able to productive play for stretches. Additionally, each had been signed on the [relatively] low cost, which is good for the reason that Sixers cannot afford to spend an excessive amount of on a second middle. Drummond solely signed for a single season, so the backup middle spot must be stuffed once more subsequent summer season, and so long as Embiid is the centerpiece of the workforce, it’s going to stay an especially necessary place for Philadelphia. 

https://www.cbssports.com/nba/information/what-joel-embiids-max-contract-extension-means-for-76ers-an-open-championship-window-a-premium-on-shooting/ | What Joel Embiid’s max contract extension means for 76ers: An open championship window, a premium on taking pictures


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