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DeAndre Jordan on why he ultimately chose the Philadelphia 76ers

DJ also shared his forecast for the Los Angeles Lakers and his cooperation with James Harden
Mar 7, 2022; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; DeAndre Jordan on the Philadelhpia 76ers

DeAndre Jordan (Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports )

Los Angeles Lakers fans were quite relieved when DeAndre Jordan was waived. Not because the center was one of the team’s weakest links, but rather because, Frank Vogel wasn’t able to find a more significant role for him. Jordan was well-aware of this. And so, when he saw an opportunity with the Philadelphia 76ers, he did not hesitate to take it.

Familiarity

According to Jordan, his move to Philly was influenced by the presence of Doc Rivers — his head coach for five seasons with the LA Clippers. Jordan firmly believes the Lakers still have a chance to make waves in the future. But focusing on the present, the one-time All-Star believes Philly is the place to be.

“I enjoyed my time there, for sure. Obviously, this is an opportunity where I’m familiar with Doc (Rivers) so this is a chance to come here and play a little more and have a chance to go further in the postseason.”

DeAndre Jordan, USA Today

I do think those guys (the Lakers) are going to have some success late,” Jordan added. “But this was just the best opportunity, I feel like for me,” Jordan said, per USA Today.

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Taking a page out of Lob City

While Rivers seems to be the main pull, Jordan is also aware of James Harden’s presence — the newly minted offensive orchestrator and franchise player. This is the first time he’ll don the same jersey with the Beard. But he is very familiar with Harden’s exploits, particularly alongside big men.

For a big or anybody trying to get easy baskets, he’s the best guy to play with,” said Jordan. “He’s so unselfish when it comes to passing and getting guys open, getting the other guys going, because he can get hisself going at any point in time. So, for me, I’m obviously on a different team, my job doesn’t change at all. That’s great for me and I’ve also obviously played with Tobias as well.

While Jordan will be the backup center to Joel Embiid, we cannot discount the potential of the Harden-DJ connection. As proven by his stint with the Clippers, Jordan knows how to work with a willing passer like Harden. Pick-and-rolls will be their bread and butter. Yes, Jordan is getting older every day, but he still has the elevation to throw down a monster alley-oop from Harden.

Apart from contributing to the offense, the 76ers should also have a sturdier defense with Jordan around. His size alone poses problems for opposing teams. He also has the IQ to boot, evidenced by his two selections into the NBA All-Defensive First Team.

All in all, we can safely say that the 76ers front office did an excellent job at the trade deadline and at keeping an eye on the waivers. After the controversial Ben Simmons saga, the 76ers are back to contention.

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