Ex-Heat Star P.J. Tucker Sends Strong Message After Inking Sixers Deal

P.J. Tucker

Getty P.J. Tucker #17 of the Miami Heat celebrates after a three pointer against the Orlando Magic during the second half at Amway Center on December 17, 2021 in Orlando, Florida.

The Philadelphia 76ers made their two biggest moves official on Wednesday following the end of the NBA’s free-agent moratorium. P.J. Tucker and Danuel House are ready to contribute to what they hope is a championship squad.

Tucker — the guy hand-picked by Joel Embiid for his toughness — already has one ring on his finger which he earned during the 2020-21 season with the Milwaukee Bucks. The 37-year-old wasted no time in making his goal clear to Sixers fans everywhere. Tucker is in it to win it — and he doesn’t care who knows it.

“This team is good enough to compete head-to-head with anybody in the league, and I’m going to come in here and do whatever I can to help get us to that next level,” Tucker said, via a press release. “Philly fans demand greatness and it will be up to us to get to where we need to be in order to accomplish our goals. I’m excited to get to work.”

Tucker was a thorn in the Sixers’ side as a member of the Miami Heat last season. He stuck to James Harden like glue in the Eastern Conference semifinals while drawing jeers from the Philly faithful after instigating several fights.

It’s got to be comforting to everyone in the locker room to have him scrapping for them. Tucker averaged 7.6 points, 5.5 rebounds, and 2.1 assists in 27.9 minutes per game last year in Miami. He shot a career-best 41.5% from deep.

“P.J. Tucker is one of the most respected and relentless competitors in our game and is the type of competitor our fans will love and embrace,” Sixers president Daryl Morey said. “We’re excited to add his leadership, toughness, defensive versatility, and championship pedigree to our roster. P.J. wants to deliver an NBA title to Philadelphia and his work ethic and mentality make him an impactful addition to our team and city.”

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Contract Details Revealed for Tucker, House

The Sixers didn’t disclose financials on the two contracts doled out to Tucker and House. Those terms were estimated at the start of the free-agency moratorium, though. According to The Inquirer, Tucker signed a three-year deal worth $33.2 million. And House inked a two-year contract for $8.5 million, per ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

House played in 42 games during the 2021-22 campaign between Houston, New York, and Utah. He averaged 5.9 points and 2.6 rebounds while shooting 37.6% from three-point land. The 6-foot-6 wing went undrafted in the 2016 draft.

“Danuel is a very talented two-way player who immediately bolsters our wing depth and strengthens our roster,” Morey said, via a press release. “He is a willing shooter from outside who can space the floor and punish the opposition. On defense, his size, athleticism, and ability to guard multiple positions make him a tough match-up, especially as we plan for a deep playoff run.”

That means the Houston reunion is complete. Both Tucker and House were teammates with James Harden on the Rockets, under the watchful eye of Morey in 2018 when he was named NBA Executive of the Year.

Sixers Battle Utah Jazz in Summer League

The Sixers were set to battle the Utah Jazz in the Salt Lake City Summer League on Wednesday at 9 p.m. The game will be broadcast live on ESPN2. Paul Reed will look to build on his 20-point performance against Memphis, while Isaiah Joe (19 points) and Jaden Springer (15 points) look to improve on up-and-down nights in the exhibition opener. Click here for the full schedule and roster.

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