Kyle Lowry is going to test the free agent waters. I, for one, can’t remember an NBA where Lowry wasn’t a Raptor. In fact, I had no idea he’s been on TWO (!!!) teams besides the Raptors. As surprising as that fact is, to me at least, it is not the point. The point is that Lowry is (maybe) on the move and the question is: Where is he heading?
So, Lowry has said that he wants to play for a contender. Not many teams come to mind when I think of contenders with money to blow on maxing Lowry. The Spurs I guess, but they could make a real run at CP3.
That leaves us with no real contenders. So could Lowry, who reportedly wants to play in his hometown, end up a Sixer?
The short answer here is yes. I mean, the Sixers have enough cap room to sign anybody they want. They literally tried to acquire Jamal Crawford and Manu Ginobili for 15+ million dollars, because they could. That leaves money to be a non-issue for the Sixers, at least in the short-term.
There are two issues that arise when you look further into this deal.
- The Sixers will have to sign their young talent while Lowry is making $40 mil
So this one may seem bad, but honestly if you think about it, it isn’t that big of a deal. Simmons and Embiid are the two players that COULD (if healthy) be max contract guys. Covington and Saric are nice players for the future, but neither will demand a max.
In the NBA, you can afford 3 max contracts on your team, and that is under current rules. The salary cap is bound to rise in the next couple years, which will leave room for the 3 max contracts and some role players. By the time Lowry’s contract is up, whoever the pick (or picks) is this year will be finishing up their rookie deal, so there won’t be any issue on that front.
As much as I don’t love the idea of paying a 35 year old Kyle Lowry $40 million dollars, he would be worth a max deal. I think it’s time to start winning a little bit and with the Kings pick moving forward, why not build around Simmons, Embiid, and current draft picks, while winning a few games by adding Lowry?
- The Sixers have at least 1 pick in the top 7, maybe 2. And this draft is PG heavy.
So, the real concern for me is that we have to start thinking about the best fits for the Sixers. The Sixers could end up with 2 of the top 7 picks and this draft has 5 point guards in the top 10: Markelle Fultz, Lonzo Ball, De’Aaron Fox, Dennis Smith Jr, and Frank N-however the fuck you spell his name.
If the Sixers end up drafting one of the point guards, sticking him behind Lowry for years to come could be a problem. Whoever the pick is needs time with Embiid and Simmons because the Sixers need to establish a young core.
With Lowry on the team, there could be some problems with minutes at point guard, not to mention the fact that Ben Simmons is apparently going to run the point a lot.
The bottom line is that the Lowry deal is very real. If the Sixers don’t land a point guard in this draft, I fully expect them to make a run at Lowry. Obviously, if we could make it a 3 year deal as opposed to 4 that’d be ideal. Or if Kyle wanted to take a hometown discount and be back in the city of Brotherly Love, that’d be cool. But regardless, it’s looking very possible that we see a team led by Lowry, Simmons and Embiid in Philly.