A good start to NBA Free Agency has put the Sixers in a perfect spot to make the NBA Playoffs during the 2017-2018 season.
According to Sportsline simulations, the Philadelphia 76ers have an 80 percent chance of making the NBA Playoffs.
On Saturday, the Sixers made a big money move by signing sharpshooter J.J. Redick to a one-year deal worth $23 million for next season. The addition of Redick made the difference in pushing the Sixers towards the playoffs.
Before the acquisition, Philadelphia had a 58.7 percent chance, but the signing made the playoffs much more probable. It moved projections from the bubble at number eight to a comfortable sixth seed in the Eastern Conference.
The Sixers win percentage was projected to below .500 before acquiring Redick, but the move should push them over .500. Sportsline says they should have a 51.2 win percentage next season. This equals 42 wins over an 82 game season.
This would be a huge improvement for the 76ers, who finished last season 28-54. That record made them 14th in the Eastern Conference. The only team worse was the New Jersey Nets.
Redick fills a hole for the Sixers at the shooting guard position. Unlike Gerald Henderson, Redick can shoot consistently. Last season, the Duke graduate made 201 three-pointers, a career high. Philadelphia hasn’t had a player accomplish that feat since Kyle Korver in the 2004-2005 season.
What can’t be shown in statistics is the wisdom and leadership Redick can bring to the Sixers, one of the youngest teams in the NBA.
Philadelphia has a very exciting young core of players, led by Joel Embiid and Markelle Fultz, but they need a veteran to show them how to win under pressure in the NBA.
Redick could make the Sixers a dark horse in the Eastern Conference, especially as talent is shifting towards teams in the west.