Daryl Morey is truly bringing the Process full circle. Philadelphia stayed busy in adding to their roster yesterday, announcing the return of 6-foot-6 forward Justin Anderson. The 27-year-old originally joined the Sixers in 2017 as part of the Nerlens Noel trade (which famously also included the fake first). He spent 1.5 seasons here, appearing in 62 games total. He then played the past two seasons in Atlanta and Brooklyn, respectively.
Despite his limitations offensively (just a 29.6 percent career 3-point shooter), Anderson became something of a fan favorite during his time with the Sixers thanks to his hard-nosed defensive play, ferocious dunks, and A-plus bench celebrations. He also became best friends with Joel Embiid, which I’m sure played no small part in the front office’s decision to bring him back. Happy star, happy basketball czar.
Unlike some of the other recent signings which we might tend to consider more as training camp bodies, Anderson appears to have the inside track on making the final roster due to the nature of his deal.
Following up on @PaulHudrick's Justin Anderson report — I am told Anderson's deal is actually a two-year deal with partial guarantees in year one, with a second non-guaranteed year on top of that— Kyle Neubeck (@KyleNeubeck) November 27, 2020
The partial guarantee would seemingly indicate management has designs on keeping Anderson around. While his offensive game is a struggle, the Sixers have already brought in plenty of shooting, and may have reached the point where Justin’s defensive switchability across multiple positions helps provide more of a scarce resource on the current roster. Whether or not he sticks around into the regular season, it’ll be great to see Simba roar in a Sixers uniform once more.