Philadelphia 76ers: How the offense will change in 2019-20

Josh Richardson, Ben Simmons | Philadelphia 76ers (Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images)
Josh Richardson, Ben Simmons | Philadelphia 76ers (Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images) /

The Philadelphia 76ers’ offense will add new wrinkles next season.

There’s been one constant on the mind of myself and other Philadelphia 76ers fans this summer — that being how the offense will change this upcoming season. Jimmy Butler, T.J. McConnell, Boban Marjanovic and J.J. Redick all parted ways and took their productivity with them. Also, the team’s dribble-handoff heavy offense could be scaled back just a bit to complement the replacements of the four aforementioned players.

Butler leaves with his ability to play the pick-and-roll, getting a shot when you need one, and drawing contact for two shots at the free throw line. During his Sixers tenure, Butler averaged 18.2 points, 4.0 assists and 5.5 free throw attempts per game.

Fitting Butler comfortably into a role in Philly’s offense had its ups and downs due to Butler’s reluctantly to shoot as many threes as the team called for. After shooting 39 triples in December, Butler shot 27 the next month and never exceeded 30 the rest of the regular season.

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The absence of Butler in the playoffs is where his departure will be felt most as he reached double digits in every game against Toronto while handling backup point guard duties and increasing his quantity of 3-pointers taken to 34 attempts. Josh Richardson will be amongst the top candidates to replace Butler’s role within the offense this season.

Cult heroes T.J. McConnell and Boban Marjanovic will have less of an impact on the offense due to their roles. McConnell averaged 19.3 minutes per game, 6.4 points and 3.4 assists on 52.5 percent from the field while holding down the backup point guard role. Boban was more of a novelty offensive player, taking only 5.5 shots per game with Philly and a majority of them being inside the paint at an efficient clip of 62.5 percent from the field.

Their abilities on offense, although not as potent, have to be replaced in some way this upcoming season. The combination of Trey Burke, Raul Neto and Kyle O’Quinn will get their number called for replacing T.J. and Boban.

The most important loss from last season’s offense was J.J. Redick. Redick averaged a career-high 18.1 points on 39.7 three-point percentage and eight attempts per game. Zooming in the lens on other Redick’s stats shows his importance in the dribble-handoff system. Redick’s 395 DHO possessions was first in the NBA and 1.10 points on DHO possessions was second. This is a high usage rate and one of the reasons for Redick’s career high in points last season.

The Sixers will certainly be trying out a main replacement for Redick’s role in the offense, Josh Richardson being the most likely player. Richardson’s 174 DHO possessions was fifth in the NBA and he scored 1.01 points per possession. Obviously Richardson won’t be able to exactly replicate Redick’s impact, but he could help cushion the blow of losing Redick given his similar statistical profile. Richardson’s experience with dribble-handoffs will allow Brett Brown to still keep some of his system in place.

Brown can call for more off-ball movement and pick-and-roll plays, while still using Richardson and others in DHO sets. Tobias Harris and Ben Simmons are the two guys that should be called upon to contribute heavily to the offense. Brown should consider running more pin down and flare screens to create the spacing required for the Philadelphia 76ers’ offense to flow at its best.

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It remains to be seen, but I’m sure Brown and the whole team staff is working diligently to make the offense work to its full potential this season.