Sadly, Danny Granger’s Philadelphia 76ers debut is on hold, at least for now. The Sixers want to see what Granger’s stance is on staying in Philadelphia before deciding whether to play him.
Various media outlets are reporting Granger wants out of Philadelphia. If this proves to be true, Granger’s time with the Sixers will be short-lived.
Granger is apparently still shell-shocked after learning the Indiana Pacers traded him. He spent all eight seasons with the Pacers and was traded to the Sixers before Thursday’s trade deadline for Evan Turner and Lavoy Allen.
The Sixers could hold onto Granger until the end of the season just to do a sign-and-trade with another team interested in the 30-year-old forward. Even if the Sixers decide to grant Granger’s wishes with a buyout, it wouldn’t be a total loss. Granger becomes an unrestricted free agent this summer and the Sixers’ season appears to end in mid-April.
Losing Granger isn’t necessarily bad. He’s slowly recovering after dealing with numerous injuries the last two seasons. His production has been far below his superstar days when he averaged 25.8 points, 5.1 rebounds and 1.4 blocks per game. He averages 8.3 points and 3.6 assists in 29 games this season.
Sixers general manager Sam Hinkie told the media that the Sixers will talk with Granger before making a decision on keeping him. If Granger expressed interest in staying, the Sixers were ready to offer him an extension. The Sixers would have benefitted from having Granger locked in for the next few years. He could become a locker room presence and support for the Sixers’ next top lottery pick.
Without Granger, the Sixers can focus their attention to signing a healthier free agent such as LeBron James or Zach Randolph. The only problem would be attracting them if a former star like Granger doesn’t want to play in Philadelphia.
The Sixers sat out all their newly acquired players in Friday night’s 124-112 loss to the Dallas Mavericks. Granger will most likely end up with another contender such as the San Antonio Spurs or Portland Trail Blazers if the Sixers buy him out.
Granger would give the Sixers scoring and defense, but he would hold them back. They’re in tanking mode, so they’d be encouraged to allow Granger to walk just to save more money.