ESPN Insider Suggests Sixers Sign Free Agent ‘Tough Guy’

Kyle Lowry

Getty Free agent point guard Kyle Lowry could either replace or complement Ben Simmons on the Philadelphia 76ers.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter has earned a living breaking blockbuster trades and free-agent signings in the NFL. But the plugged-in national reporter is a huge basketball fan and wasn’t afraid to share his thoughts on how to fix the Philadelphia 76ers during a recent radio interview.

The first thing the Sixers need to do is get rid of Ben Simmons, per Schefter, and make a move for Toronto Raptors free-agent Kyle Lowry. The six-time All-Star point guard was linked to the Sixers at last year’s trade deadline but team president Daryl Morey opted for George Hill. Lowry, a Philly native, would give them the “glue guy” and the “tough guy” they desperately need.

“I make that move. If I’m Daryl Morey here for a moment, yeah, I’m going to go sign Kyle Lowry,” Schefter told the John Kincade Show on 97.5 The Fanatic. “Bring him back to Philadelphia. We’re going to get a nice short-term deal done, two years, maybe they have to do three years. It’s probably going to be a lot of money, but that is the kind of guy, a glue guy, a tough guy, that this team needs.”

To which co-host Bob Cooney replied: “They need a bulldog and he [Lowry] is the definition of bulldog to me.”

While Schefter was simply offering his outside opinion as a non-basketball insider, Cooney did cover the Sixers for several years during his 25-year stint at the Philadelphia Daily News. And he wasn’t the only one beating the drum for Lowry heading to Philly. The Inquirer’s Keith Pompey brought up a sign-and-trade scenario during a recent appearance on Sportsnet 590 The FAN in Toronto.

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Another Idea: Keep Simmons, Add Lowry

What if the Sixers kept Simmons and added Lowry? It might be hard to work out the financials on that idea, but it certainly would boost their championship odds significantly. And that’s assuming Simmons is willing to accept his recent criticism and work on his jumper this offseason.

One NBA scout told The Inquirer’s Marc Narducci that he could see Simmons playing point forward — the position Scottie Pippen made famous on those Chicago Bulls title teams — while Lowry took over at point guard.

The scout says what many others have suggested, that Simmons’ best position isn’t point guard.

“To me Ben is a point forward and you can run offense through him,” he said. “I don’t like him as a primary ball handler, but he is a big wing who can make plays and run the pick and roll.”

The scout added that the Sixers should “move heaven and earth to try to bring him [Lowry] home,” per Narducci. Lowry made $30.5 million last year in Toronto.

Raptors Star Gets Doctorate Degree

Here’s a fun tidbit about Lowry: the one-time NBA champion is now a doctor. He received an honorary doctorate degree in Humanities from Nova Scotia’s Acadia University, per ESPN. The 35-year-old was lauded for his accomplishments on the basketball court as well as his many charitable endeavors off it, including the Lowry Love Foundation.

Acadia delivered a statement on why Lowry was deserving of the honor:

The University will also award an honorary degree to 2016 Olympic gold medalist (U.S. Men’s Basketball) and Toronto Raptor Kyle Lowry. He rallied the nation when he led Canada’s only NBA franchise to an historic NBA championship victory in 2019. Lowry and his wife, Ayahna Cornish-Lowry, are committed to improving the lives of the disadvantaged in Toronto and Philadelphia to help them experience a better quality of life. Together, they set up the Lowry Love Foundation, a charity that gives back to the community.

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The announcement led to some fun banter on Sixers Twitter as fans noted that Dr. Lowry would fit in pretty nicely next to Doc Rivers and Julius “Dr. J” Erving.

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