Sixers news: Andre Drummond signs one-year contract

Andre Drummond, Sixers (Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images)
Andre Drummond, Sixers (Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images) /

The Sixers have signed Andre Drummond to a one-year contract, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. That pretty much solves the backup center problem, as Drummond — despite his many, many flaws — is one of the NBA’s best rebounders, and is only a season removed from averaging 17.7 points and 15.2 rebounds in 2019-20.

Per Kyle Neubeck of PhillyVoice, Drummond has signed for the veteran’s minimum, meaning the Sixers still have the full $5.9 million mid-level exception available. If Danny Green walks and George Hill is waived, then Philadelphia will have access to the $9 million mid-level exception.

Drummond is probably the biggest name left on the market in free agency. He struggled mightily in Los Angeles to end last season, but was not optimized in his role. The Sixers are not an inherently better fit, but he is a significant upgrade over 35-year-old Dwight Howard, who happens to be taking Drummond’s spot in LA.

The Sixers have signed Andre Drummond to a minimum contract, completing the funniest and most ironic move of free agency yet.

Not long ago, Drummond was Public Enemy No. 1 in Philadelphia, having sparked a fairly one-sided beef with Joel Embiid and getting embarrassed constantly for his trouble. Now he will challenge Embiid in practice, and get the chance to restore his market value as the Sixers’ primary backup.

The Sixers can still make other moves at center, but given Doc Rivers’ track record and Drummond’s flashy name, it’s hard to imagine a different center — much less a 21-year-old Paul Reed, or the recently drafted Charles Bassey — beating Drummond out for minutes. That said, the Sixers would be wise to invest in a small-ball option, too, or experiment with Ben Simmons at the five in the unlikely event he sticks around.

Drummond was thought to be part of the Lakers’ future at times last season, but with the Howard signing and the Westbrook trade, his departure comes as little surprise. Philadelphia, however, is a fascinating destination. For the minimum contract, one would think Brooklyn, Atlanta, and other contenders would have expressed interest. Now, we will see how he fairs in Philly.

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