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This news and link stems from the comments on a previous post. Jason Smith has torn his ACL and could be done for the year. Disappointing news for a guy who looked like he was set up to contribute in the front court rotation this season, and really be the team's backup center.

This should open the door for Speights to see heavier time at the 5. It also makes Reggie Evans very important to this team. The Sixers don't have a lot of depth among their bigs. I expect we'll see small lineups with Brand at the 5, Thad at the 4, Iguodala at the 3, Williams at the 2 and Andre Miller at the point.

This also opens the door for another big man to be added to the roster. Here is a list of unrestricted free agent big men who may or may not be available for the minimum:

  • P.J. Brown
  • Scott Pollard
  • Othella Harrington
  • Juwon Howard
  • Jamaal Magloire
  • Theo Ratliff
  • Dikembe Mutombo
  • David Harrison
  • Alonzo Mourning
  • Earl Barron
  • Michael Ruffin
  • Jake Voskuhl
  • Michael Doleac
  • Pat Garrity
  • Robert Horry
From that list, I'd take a shot on David Harrison, maybe one of the old shot blockers (Theo Ratliff, Dikembe, Mourning), the other guys don't really interest me.

Another possibility would be swapping one bad contract for another. Willie Green is due $11.046M over the next three seasons. It's a horrible contract, so maybe the Sixers could find an equally bad contract for a front-court player. I've been looking, but I just can't see a fit. No one is going to give the Sixers anything of value for Willie, so the only hope would be a salary dump. The Sixers could take back 125% of the '09-'10 value of Green's deal, so $4.235M. A couple of names fit in that range: Charlie Villaneuva, Ryan Gomes and Brian Cook, but none of those guys have bad contracts, and they all probably have some value.

I think the Sixers' best bet is to get a warm body for the end of the bench, preferably someone who does something well, like Ratliff, and use a rotation of Dalembert/Speights/Brand/Evans/Thad at the 4 and 5 for 90% of the minutes.
by Brian on Aug 8 2008
Tags: Basketball | Injuries | Jason Smith | Offseason | Sixers |