Tobias Harris’ name has been the subject of trade rumors for what feels like forever. This offseason has been no different with the Inquirer’s Keith Pompey reporting earlier this summer that the Sixers were gauging interest in the 29-year-old and ESPN’s Brian Windhorst on Thursday morning mentioning that Harris is “on the trade market.”
However, a source tells Liberty Ballers that it’s “very likely” Harris will return next season. The veteran forward is said to love being here and the team loves the way he adapted to his role — focusing on defense, embracing the catch-and-shoot — while playing alongside James Harden. The Sixers also view Harden’s decision to opt out and sign a more team-friendly deal as an opportunity to add players, not subtract them.
Now, that’s not to say the Sixers haven’t looked into a Harris trade or that he is in anyway untouchable. It just means at this point that the team expects him to be on the roster next season — and that both the player and the team are good with the situation. You’ll recall there were also whispers that Harris desired a larger on-ball role than what’s available here with Harden, Joel Embiid and Tyrese Maxey in the mix.
After a shaky start, Harris did seem to flourish playing with Harden. After The Beard’s debut, Harris shot over 40 percent on 4.6 attempts from three a game in 24 games to close out the regular season. He was at just 34.5 percent on 3.4 attempts before Harden’s arrival. Not only did that continue in the postseason (38.6 on 4.8 attempts), but Harris elevated his defense substantially from previous years.
Harris has proven to be a leader, taking young players under his wing. He’s also been extremely charitable and great in the community, which earned him a nomination for the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Social Justice Champion Award last season.
With Harris owed $37.6M for this season and $39.3M in 2023-24, it always seemed like moving him would be difficult. We’ll likely be talking about Harris rumors next offseason while he’s playing on an expiring deal, but for now, it appears he’s here to stay.