Danny Green

2019 NBA free agent targets: Danny Green, Seth Curry among wing options for Sixers

2019 NBA free agent targets: Danny Green, Seth Curry among wing options for Sixers

June 30 at 6 p.m. is getting closer and closer.

After Paul Hudrick looked at free agent point guard options for the Sixers yesterday, we’ll review five wing options today.

We’re not going to touch on marquee names like Kawhi Leonard, Klay Thompson and Kevin Durant, all of whom seem like distant possibilities for the Sixers. 

Danny Green

Green is a logical option for the Sixers, especially if JJ Redick departs. The 32-year-old shot 45.5 percent from three-point range last season and has a strong track record as both a shooter and a defender. He wasn’t at his best this postseason and didn’t see the floor during the Raptors’ decisive stretch in Game 6 of the Finals, but he has ample playoff experience and doesn’t shy away from taking big shots. 

Reggie Bullock 

Bullock is a tier below Green but might be in the Sixers’ price range. For his career, he’s a 39.2 percent shooter from long range, though his production and efficiency dipped after he was dealt from Detroit to the Lakers in February. While he’s played almost 30 minutes per game the past two seasons, Bullock would be well suited for a bench role in Philadelphia. If James Ennis were to sign elsewhere, Bullock would be a strong replacement.

Seth Curry 

You may be starting to sense a theme here. At 28 years old, Curry has firmly established himself as a legit NBA player, not just Steph’s brother. Again, his standout skill is his three-point shooting — 45 percent on 3.9 attempts per game for Portland last year. The Sixers hope Zhaire Smith and Matisse Thybulle can be effective three-point shooters, but both still need to prove they’re capable in that area. Though a player like Curry might not be in Smith and Thybulle’s class athletically, you know you’d be getting an excellent shooter. 

Thabo Sefolosha 

Even at 35 years old, with his career presumably on its last legs, Sefolosha could help a contending team. He’s a long, smart player who does a lot of little things very well and posted a plus-8.6 net rating last season, higher than Donovan Mitchell, Rudy Gobert and Joe Ingles. That’s not to say Sefolosha is better than those players, but it’s clear he’s not done quite yet. General manager Elton Brand said on draft night that he doesn’t want to lean too heavily on young players, so expect the Sixers to place a high value on reliable veterans. 

Garrett Temple 

One of Temple’s most attractive qualities for the Sixers would be his ability to defend multiple positions at 6-foot-6. He’s had some fluctuations as a shooter, with his career average at 35.3 percent. Temple likely wouldn’t immediately slot into the Sixers’ playoff rotation, but, if he can be had at a low price, would be a solid option off the bench. 

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More on the Sixers

Sixers should pursue Danny Green if Spurs willing to trade

Sixers should pursue Danny Green if Spurs willing to trade

Could Brett Brown and Gregg Popovich's basketball worlds collide in a trade this summer? 

The Spurs are open to trading shooting guard Danny Green, according to Jabari Young of the San Antonio Express-News on Wednesday. Young pointed out the Spurs are not close to a deal. 

The Sixers should at least pursue a move if it is on the table. 

Green would fit the Sixers' needs: outside shooting, defense and a veteran presence. Last season, Green, who turns 30 on Thursday, averaged 7.3 points, 3.3 rebounds, 1.8 assists and shot 37.9 percent from three in 26.6 minutes as a starter. 

Green has averaged 8.8 points, 3.4 rebounds and 1.6 assists per game in his eight-year career. He is a career 42.3 percent shooter from the field and a 40.0 percent shooter from three-point range.

He is set to make an affordable $10 million next season with a player option for the same amount in 2018-19. That's a bargain in today's market and less than what some free agents will be garnering this summer. 

The real hook here, though, is Green's connection with Brown. 

The Sixers head coach was key in Green's development while on the Spurs' staff. Three-point shooting is just as much about mentality and confidence as it is skill. Brown helped boost Green's confidence to go after that open look. 

The following is from a CSNPhilly.com article published in February when the Sixers hosted the Spurs (see full story):

Green joined the Spurs in 2010, already on his second team in as many years after being waived by the Cavaliers.

Brown urged Green, who shot a mere 27.3 percent from long range his rookie season, to keep taking his looks no matter how many times he missed. Green listened and went on to set the record for most three-pointers made in the NBA Finals in 2013. Brown has been instilling the same mantra in Robert Covington on the Sixers.

“Brownie’s amazing,” Green said. “He was always the positive guy and kept things even-keeled. He always told me to shoot the ball every time. … He’s always that guy to brighten up the practice, brighten up the day, made our lives easier for us, made our jobs easier for us.”

...

Brown’s presence was quickly missed when he parted ways to begin his career in Philadelphia.

“When he left and also Bud (Mike Budenholzer) left, it was just different,” Green said. “It was after we lost, it was a tough summer, it was a tough year. ... Until we got back to the playoffs and back to the championship and won it, finally, the whole year was kind of a drag. … Everybody was hard on each other. There was a lot of tension, a lot of hostility, a lot of still thinking about that previous summer, previous year of losing.

“It was very hard and we lost that guy that mediates the locker room and the coaching staff — him and Bud. It was very different until we won it and then it kind of eased up a little bit. But still, since he’s gone, the locker room’s been different.”

“I think he’s the perfect fit for this job to turn things around, keep guys positive, stay above water,” Green said. “If there was any guy to do it throughout a whole season with things going in the opposite direction, it’s him.”

The Sixers traded away a future first-round pick to the Celtics this week but they still have draft assets with which to work (see story).

Looking at the current roster, Nik Stauskas could be appealing to the Spurs. He improved last season to 36.8 percent from three and is a long-range contributor who can play multiple positions. Stauskas also has an expiring contract. 

Then there's the ongoing uncertainty about Jahlil Okafor's future with the Sixers. Center (and former Sixer) Dewayne Dedmon is opting out of his contract with the Spurs to become a free agent. Would they take a look at Okafor at the five spot? 

Again, Young noted the Spurs are not close to a trade. But if the Sixers have any questions about Green's game, Brown is the right person to call.