Darel Morey stepped down as the Rockets GM because he wanted to spend more time with his family. A month later, he’s off to a strong start with the Sixers‘, as the team’s President of Basketball Operations.
As ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported, Morey traded away Al Horford, a lightly-protected ’25 first-round pick, the 34th pick who turned out as Theo Maledon, and the rights to Vasilije Micic to the Thunder. In return, the Sixers received Danny Green and Terrance Ferguson. Green brings shooting and championship credentials, with Ferguson being another athletic wing defender to pair up with Matiss Thybulle. Both Danny and Terrance have one year left on their contracts, with the Sixers having an option of giving the latter a $5.7 million worth qualifying offer once the season is up.
But this was more about addition by subtraction, as Morey got Horford’s contract off the books. A 33-year-old big man has 3 years left on his deal and is owed $81 million until ’23. Shipping him was the number one priority for the Sixers, as they now enter the pathway towards some sort of financial alleviation. Especially because the experiment of pairing him up with Joel Embiid didn’t go as planned. So instead of twin-towering their way towards title contention, Morey used the Rockets approach and applied it to the 76ers, surrounding his superstar players with shooters and defenders instead of trying to fit in the guys whose skillsets are overlapping.
An hour after news broke about Horford being on his way out of Philadelphia, his siblings responded on Twitter, calling the Sixers fans “the most miserable fans in the NBA,” talking about how they’re glad to see their brother getting shipped from the Sixers.
No words from Al yet. But looking on it, he’s better off somewhere else, especially because, basketball-wise, there was no way of making it work. He can still make an impact on a contending team. Playing within the system Philly implemented just wasn’t the right situation for him.
Meanwhile, Morey continued to make moves, as he traded Josh Richardson and the 36th pick in the Draft (Tyler Bey) to the Dallas Mavericks for Seth Curry, making Doc Rivers the first guy in NBA history to coach his son and his son-in-law. Daryl means business, and I have a feeling this is just the beginning. It’s a good time to be the Sixers fan, despite the Horford family labeling them as “the most miserable fans in the NBA.”