Seth Curry was one of the brightest spots on the Philadelphia 76ers’ roster this past season. He set playoff career-highs in a bevy of statistical categories including points per game (18.8), minutes per game (31.8), assists per game (2.3), rebounds per game (2.3), and three-point percentage (50.6%). There were times where Curry was the best scoring option on the floor.
But maybe that was an indictment on the way the Sixers’ roster was constructed. Outside of Tobias Harris, they really didn’t have many guys who could create off the dribble and drive to the rim. Tyrese Maxey flashed promise, but he needs another year to fully develop his jumper. The rest of the rotation was filled mainly with catch-and-shoot players like Danny Green.
“Obviously, we’d love to have All-Stars at every position, right?” Morey said. “We have to see what’s out there. We can’t overreact to anything that just happened but you also can’t underreact. I know that sounds like GM speak because it is but it’s also true. We have to make the decisions that are best, that are available, over this offseason with free agency, trade, and draft.”
The Sixers have been linked to making a push for Kyle Lowry in free agency. The franchise also has to make a big decision on whether to bring back Green, along with fellow free agents Furkan Korkmaz, Dwight Howard, Mike Scott.
“If we go in with we know we have to do X, I know that doesn’t work,” Morey said. “You can’t go in and say we need exactly this. If you do that, you’ll fail. Because you need a whole set of options and then pick the one that optimizes your championship odds. I thought we did a good job, not a great job, at doing that last year and we need to do a great job this offseason.”
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Defending Curry’s First Year in Philadelphia
Morey’s above comments came in response to a question about Curry being a one-trick pony from beyond the arc. He defended the 30-year-old — “he is a Curry, right?,” Morey said — while crediting head coach Doc Rivers for improving his all-around game. Curry did show the ability to slash into the lane and knock down his brother’s signature 6-foot floater.
Curry, who survived a bout with COVID-19 in 2021, has two years left on the $32 million contract he inked with the Dallas Mavericks in 2020. He was traded to the Sixers in exchange for Josh Richardson and the 36th overall pick that year. Morey remains excited about what the future holds for his starting five — with or without Ben Simmons in it.
“Seth is improving before our eyes which I think again is a testament to him and what Doc’s been able to do,” Morey said. “I do think Tobias [Harris] and Joel [Embiid] are two primary scorers. They’re both extremely good players, pretty much every team in the league would love to have both of them.”
Internal Improvements Over External?
Morey’s track record is one of an aggressive deal-maker willing to do anything to win a championship. Maybe that’s why everyone seems to think Simmons is a goner. Remember, the Sixers did try to trade the All-Star point guard this past offseason if reports are true. But that could be a challenge considering their limited cap space buoyed by the 28th overall pick in the draft.
“I would say more internal improvement than external,” Morey said about his next steps. “I wish basketball was rocket science sometimes because it would take a lot less to create a little bit of an edge but you know, I think it’s pretty straightforward on what certain players need to improve.”
If the Sixers remain committed to their core trio — Simmons, Harris, Embiid — that’s not a bad drawing board to go back to.
“It’s pretty rare, frankly, to have top players who are already performing at a very high level in this league,” Morey said, “and also have things that you can point to and say like ‘Hey, if we can improve that, the team can get a lot better.’ That’s pretty rare and it’s actually an opportunity, not a negative.”