Saric scrimmaged Wednesday with what appeared to be the Sixers' projected starting lineup, Jake Fischer of the Sports Illustrated reports.
With No. 1 overall pick Ben Simmons manning Saric's natural power forward spot, the 22-year-old from Croatia slotted in at small forward, a position the Sixers believe he can successfully settle into over time. At 6-foot-10, Saric is bigger than most other wings, which may confer him an advantage on the offensive end, but could inhibit him defensively. In order for Saric to successfully man that spot, he'll need to show in training camp that he can consistently produce as a three-point shooter. It's not expected that that will be much of an issue for Saric, who shot better than 40 percent from beyond the arc last season while playing abroad for Anadolu Efes of the Turkish Basketball Super League. If the rookie sticks in a starting role for the bulk of the season, he could be a respectable source of points, rebounds and treys in deeper formats.
Saric's signing has been in the making since the Sixers traded for his rights during the 2014 Draft. Over that time, Saric has remained in Europe, playing for Anadolu Efes of the Turkish Super League. A two-time FIBA Europe Young Men's Player of the Year Award winner, the 22-year-old Saric averaged 11 points and six rebounds while converting 41 percent of his three-pointers last season. Touted as a savvy 6-10 forward with good court vision, Saric may find himself playing behind similarly-skilled rookie Ben Simmons, but his superior outside shooting touch could allow both youngsters to play together. Overall, the Sixers will be relieved to finally have Saric join the team, giving them yet another talented front court asset.
Saric told European reporters that he plans to join the 76ers later in July, according to ESPN.com's Marc Stein reports.
Saric has yet to officially sign a contract with the 76ers, but it seems like a foregone conclusion at this point, as the Croatian forward has suggested for months that he'll play in the NBA in 2016-17. The 22-year-old was one of the top young players in the Euroleague last season while playing for Turkish club Anadolu Efes, and would provide more of a stretch four element to the 76ers' frontcourt. The team currently boasts a crowded big man rotation that counts all of Jahlil Okafor, Nerlens Noel, Ben Simmons and Jerami Grant as viable options, but the 76ers could move one of the former two players later this summer in order to open up more minutes for Saric.
Widely considered one of the top players in Europe, Saric's long-awaited arrival to the NBA is expected to come in 2016-17, though nothing is official at this point. Still, the organization has expressed optimism over the last few months, and that tone has continued into the offseason. Saric, a likely stretch four in the NBA, would immediately provide a major boost to a franchise whose future could look considerably brighter if it's able to land another young asset or two at the top of the draft. The influx of talent could be enough to convince Saric to officially decide to come over, and president of basketball operations Bryan Colangelo indicated that he'll talk with Saric about the decision soon.
Dario Saric recently told his teammates with Turkish club Anadolu Efes that he intends to join the 76ers during the offseason, international basketball reporter David Pick reports.
It's been suggested for several months now that Saric was planning to join the 76ers for the start of the 2016-17 season, and this report only gives further credence to that notion. The 76ers will have to buy Saric out of the rest of his contract with Anadolu in order to bring him over, but that should only be a minor inconvenience for the organization. The 22-year-old would theoretically provide the 76ers with a floor-stretching power forward who can create matchup issues for slower frontcourt players, though it's difficult to see where exactly he'd fit in a big man rotation that already includes Joel Embiid (foot), Jahlil Okafor (knee), and Nerlens Noel.
| 25 || 26 || 27 || 28 || 29 || 30 || 1
| 2 || 3 || 4 |
| 5 || 6 |
| 7 || 8
Men's adidas Ben Simmons Royal Philadelphia 76ers Road Swingman Jersey Shop Now!