Should The Sixers Take a Chance on Josh Smith?


As many of you may know, forward Josh Smith was released by the Detroit Pistons.

It was a perplexing move by the Pistons that caught everyone off guard. Even saying that, it’s hard to blame Pistons coach Stan Van Gundy for cutting ties with Smith. Josh Smith has been absolutely abysmal this year and has offered very little to the team. This has actually been the case for the past two seasons.

shot-charts via

As you can see from his shot-chart above, Josh Smith has been grossly bad this year on the offensive side of the ball. He is only shooting 50 percent from the two corner-three spots (under 25 percent from threes in total, however), which is the most Josh Smith thing EVER, but he is also under 50 percent everywhere else. To go deeper into his offensive woes, he is shooting 44 percent from the paint and 33.9 percent from outside-the-paint-but-inside-the-arc-twos. To keep harping on how bad offensively he has been, his true shooting percentage is at 41.7 percent and has an offensive box plus/minus of  – 2.2, which is his worst since his rookie year (according to basketball-reference).

shot-charts via

Defensively, his per-game numbers are right on par with his averages from years past, which include his blocks, steals and defensive rating. But that does not reflect how poorly he has truly been on that side of the floor. There are some nights where he is just out there and you can tell that a) he just doesn’t give a damn, b) he has lost a step or c) both.

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But as much as he doesn’t give a damn, Josh Smith has still proven to be a talented player. Maybe not of recent, but he once was a coveted player for his defensive intangibility and for his high-low passing from the mid-range.  There’s a reason the Pistons gave him a contract in the $50 million range. Maybe a change of scenery will be good for him and maybe a sense of pride will come over him and make him want to do better than this past year and a half with the Detroit Pistons. And that brings me to this question:

Should the Sixers look to sign Josh Smith if (when) he clears waivers?

Again, he could still be a talented player. His defensive skill-set is not one that just grows on trees. A front court of Josh Smith and Nerlens Noel could produce some high level blocks and steals, plus lead to many transition buckets. But where his head is at on offense is the more worrisome part about his game. We’ve already endured Brandon Davies and Alexey Shved this year, I don’t think my eyes can take watching Josh Smith hoist up long two after long two and bricked three after bricked three. Although we’re sure Doug Collins would love that.

The other factors that comes into play are what type of contract would he sign for and why in the hell would he want to come to the Sixers?

Well, seeing as the Sixers could offer him the most out of any team would be enticing but they sure as hell won’t offer Josh Smith that much money, because he simply has not proved that he is worth it. And as far as the second question, there is no probably scenario that would make me believe that Josh Smith would be cut from the Pistons only to sign with the Sixers. The only scenario I can think of where Josh Smith signs with the Sixers is if no other team was to offer him a contract and his only choice was the Sixers or playing with Michael Beasley in China (even then, I think he chooses China).

So conclusion?

Hell to the nah, the Philadelphia 76ers shouldn’t even consider Josh Smith. His skill-set at this point is not one that would bring value to a team that is lottery bound and that attitude would probably be even worse and not one that should be around the young guys on the team aka the entire team.