Former Houston Rockets GM Daryl Morey is someone the Philadelphia 76ers have been interested in before, and someone many Sixers fans have wanted to see join the team to get their front office on the right track. After he initially stepped down as GM of the Rockets, though, possibly considering a break from the NBA while the Sixers kept Elton Brand as GM and made some new hires, Morey coming to Philadelphia didn’t look likely.
Well, it’s happening.
ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski first reported that the Sixers and Morey are finalizing a deal, and The Athletic’s Shams Charania reported that the Sixers will be hiring him on a five-year deal to run the team’s basketball operations.
Sources: Former Rockets GM Daryl Morey will sign a five-year deal with the Philadelphia 76ers as soon as this weekend to run the franchise’s basketball operations.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) October 28, 2020
Wojnarowski has added that Elton Brand is expected to stay in place as GM, and that Morey’s discussions with the Sixers started soon after he left the Rockets.
With the way Sam Hinkie (a former close colleague of Morey in Houston) left Philly and the troubled state of the front office, from an unclear power structure to overly involved owners, some were unsure whether Morey would really be interested in working for the Sixers.
Those concerns can officially be a thing of the past, though. Obviously the Sixers still have a lot of work to do to fix their flawed roster and ideally remove at least one of the massive contracts they paid out last summer to Tobias Harris and Al Horford. But the hiring of Morey is a massive boost to this franchise as they look to turn things around.
Morey has all the knowledge and experience the Sixers need. His basketball understanding, excellent mind for how to effectively utilize analytics (no, the Sixers can’t actually blame all their problems on analytics), and experience making both minor and major roster moves to maintain the Rockets’ recent status as a contender will make a major difference in Philly.
The fact that he’s been given the power to run the Sixers’ basketball operations should only reassure fans further that a front office that has made a host of mistakes in recent years can finally take a leap in the right direction. It’ll be incredibly interesting to see what Morey has in mind for the Sixers in all areas, from their use of Ben Simmons to potential trades (Chris Paul, anyone?).
With Peter Dinwiddie (a well-regarded executive from Indiana who had an impressive run working his way up the organization) joining the Sixers as their new Senior Vice President of Basketball Operations as well, the team’s front office is looking far better than it did just a few weeks ago.
Now, with a hectic couple of months coming up (the NBA Draft is taking place on November 18, and free agency could begin just two days later) to shape what the Sixers will look like next season, they have a far stronger decision-making foundation in place to start making some positive changes.
It still won’t be easy to fix this team, but they finally have the right front office leadership to try and make it happen.