I know a few people here are looking at Andre Miller and he may be available via sign-and-trade. Any interest?
The Sixers are in a shopping mode
By Kevin Tatum
Inquirer Staff Writer
With at least four spots to fill on his roster for the 2009-10 season, 76ers president and general manager Ed Stefanski was making the rounds yesterday at the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas.
Twenty-one teams are represented in the 10-day event, which began Friday.
"I'm watching players and staying in communications with other teams and agents," Stefanski said by telephone. "We need to add depth."
Though the NBA maximum for player rosters is 15, the Sixers maintained a 14-man team last season. Stefanski said he expected that to be the case again. The team has 10 players under contract.
"We need a guard, a swingman, and two bigs," said Stefanski, who has consistently declined to talk about specific players.
With Andre Miller all but gone, Stefanski is looking for a veteran point guard. The main candidate to fill the starting spot is Lou Williams, a promising but inconsistent combo guard who has not started a game during his four years with the team. And the Sixers can only hope that rookie Jrue Holiday is good enough to earn significant playing time next season.
Miller, a 33-year-old free agent who was hoping to land a three-year deal from the Sixers worth as much as $30 million, was offered a one-year contract at about $6 million from the team he directed with skill for the better part of three seasons.
Stefanski said he had been talking to Miller's agent, Andy Miller, on a "regular basis." Stefanski chose not to comment on rumors of a possible transaction involving Miller and Chris Duhon of the New York Knicks, but a league source said no such move was in the works.
"We're now in a sign-and-trade mode," said Stefanski of Miller, who could also exercise his right to sign with the team of his choosing without the Sixers' receiving any compensation.
With the Sixers having completed a five-day run in the Orlando Pro Summer League on Friday - they combined as one team with players from the New Jersey Nets - Stefanski said he was encouraged by what he saw from Holiday as the UCLA product got his first taste of the next level.
The 6-foot-4 Holiday was the team's first-round pick at No. 17 overall in the June draft. He averaged 8.6 points, 3.4 rebounds, and 3.0 assists last week.
"He's been exposed to the professional game, albeit in summer league," Stefanski said.
"He has real good size, can handle it well, and pressure didn't bother him. And he's a willing defender, and that's important. Every game, we saw a little bit more of him, and that's a positive."
Stefanski would just like to see Holiday emulate the success of rookies like Thaddeus Young and Marreese Speights, who exceeded expectations after joining the team as the Sixers' first-round draft choices in '07 and '08.
"You never know exactly what you have and how fast they're going to come," Stefanski said. "Same thing with Thaddeus. We were very fortunate to find out he is a very good player. Same thing with Speights last year. You have guarded optimism, and I think Jrue is like them."