Before Shake Milton took over the role, the Sixers struggled to find consistently good minutes from their backup point guard.
Brett Brown used veterans Trey Burke and Raul Neto with varying levels of success. Burke is no longer with the team and Neto has been relegated to the back of the bench.
With that in mind, the Sixers may look to add a veteran point guard to serve as an insurance policy and push the 23-year-old Milton.
Here are six players who could do that:
Jackson was buried in Detroit with a bloated contract before the Pistons bought him out. The Clippers swooped in to sign him and the 30-year-old has provided a decent scoring option off the bench. Jackson is a decent three-point shooter (35.8 percent over the last five seasons) and has ability to be a three-level scorer.
The biggest issues will be Jackson’s injury history and what he wants from his next team. He played all 82 games in 2018-19 but missed 67 games the previous two seasons combined. He missed 43 games this season with a back injury. With Milton already in the mix, Jackson may look for a team that will guarantee him a bigger role, and perhaps a bigger contract.
Like Jackson, Teague had a high cap number on a bad team. Unlike Jackson, Teague was shipped to a team that was also bad in the Hawks. He’s served as Trae Young’s backup since. Teague is much more of a facilitator and playmaker than a scorer, though he also is a decent shooter (35.6 percent career from three).
Teague will be 32 when next season starts and he’s not the same player he was during his first stint with Atlanta. It’ll be similar to Jackson’s situation in that it will depend on what Teague wants.
Augustin has always been a hard-nosed floor general who takes care of the ball. He’s an above-average three-point shooter, knocking down just under 38 percent of his threes for his career. He’s been a steady influence on a Magic team that hasn’t had a stable backcourt.
While Augustin is a high-effort player that’s built solidly, he still stands at just 5-foot-11. A lack of size on the defensive end seemed to be what hurt Burke and Neto the most this season. If Augustin is looking to join a contender, he could push Milton for minutes.
Perhaps it’s time to bring the Philly boy home. The Roman Catholic alum had a solid career at Pitt but wound up going undrafted in 2011. Until the Celtics signed him in 2018, Wanamaker gained a ton of professional experience overseas. His role increased in his second season in Boston, as he’s averaged 19.3 minutes a game this season. He’s a tough player that’s shot the ball very well at the NBA level (38 percent from three, 91.7 percent from the line).
Wanamaker will be a restricted free agent. It’ll be interesting to see how the Celtics handle his situation. They’ll have a lot of money tied up with Kemba Walker and Gordon Hayward (player option). Jaylen Brown’s extension will kick in and Jayson Tatum’s extension is right around the corner. If they rescind Wanamaker’s rights, the Sixers could swoop in.
Napier ticks a couple boxes as far being a shot creator and playmaker. He’s been up and down in his career as far as three-point shooting (34.6 percent career mark). He’s bounced around the past couple seasons. In 2019-20, he struggled in Minnesota and was dealt to Denver in that ridiculous four-team trade ahead of the deadline. He was then traded to the Wizards, where he had a solid 15-game stint.
Napier is going to give you something similar to what Burke provided. He can offer an offensive spark at times, but his size will be an issue on the defensive end. If you’re looking for more of an insurance policy for Milton as opposed to competition, Napier could be a decent addition.
Like Napier, Ferrell has bounced around a bit after a strong college career. He’s had a down year in his second season in Sacramento. Before this season, Ferrell was a 37.4 percent shooter from three. He’s hit only 27.5 percent this season. He does have a knack for scoring and takes care of the ball.
Ferrell is also undersized and would fit into the category of insurance policy more than competing for the backup role. Coming off a down year, you could likely get him for the veteran minimum.
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