With the start of the regular season nearing, the Sixers have decided to change things up with their two-way contract players.
The team announced Sunday that it converted Michael Foster Jr. to a two-way deal and waived Charlie Brown Jr.
Two-way players can split time between the NBA and G League. For now, the Sixers’ two-ways will be Foster and rookie wing Julian Champagnie, a source said, although those spots tend to be fluid.
Foster signed an Exhibit 10 contract with the Sixers in July. Many players on Exhibit 10 deals are with an NBA team briefly before being waived and then eventually receiving a bonus for playing with the organization’s G League affiliate. Exhibit 10 contracts can be converted to two-ways before the regular season, though, and the Sixers opted for the 19-year-old Foster over the 25-year-old Brown.
Foster, who measured in at 6-7.75 without shoes and 236.6 pounds at the NBA draft combine, was not selected this year. In 25 total games with G League Ignite last season, the Milwaukee native averaged 15.5 points and 9.5 rebounds.
Sixers head coach Doc Rivers said Sunday that converting Foster's contract was mostly about his "potential."
“He’s young, athletic, big," Rivers said. “He’s going to learn how to play basketball. But they look at his athleticism and they project that he has a chance.”
Foster called losing weight after the 2021-22 season “probably the best decision I've made," noting it's helped him be faster and more explosive.
Before converting Foster, the Sixers cut ties with another young big man Thursday, waiving 2021 second-round pick Charles Bassey. The team also waived 23-year-old wing Isaiah Joe. The Athletic’s Shams Charania reported Saturday that Joe is finalizing a multi-year contract with the Thunder.
“I talked to him yesterday," Rivers said. "Very happy. He’s got a shot, man — a shot to play — so I want him to do well. He’s a great kid.”
Brown was born in Philadelphia and played at St. Joseph’s. He joined the Sixers last year and impressed at times with his athleticism and defensive tools, though his shooting has remained a large question mark. In 19 appearances with the Sixers last season, Brown went 9 for 34 from the floor and 1 for 9 from three-point range.
In other roster matters ahead of the regular season, the Sixers have recently signed and subsequently waived Mac McClung, Justin Smith, Patrick McCaw, Skylar Mays, Aminu Mohammed and Sekou Doumbouya, per a team official. Those players are all expected to join the Delaware Blue Coats for G League training camp.
Not counting their two-ways, the Sixers have 14 players on their active roster and a total cap figure of approximately $151.4 million, according to Spotrac. The Sixers cannot exceed this season’s luxury tax apron of $156.983 million because they used the full mid-level exception to sign P.J. Tucker and the bi-annual exception to sign Danuel House Jr.
Rivers said he’s comfortable entering the regular season with an open roster spot.
“I think we believe that there’s a lot of guys out there that may become available," he said, “and we wanted to make sure we had a spot.”