The 76ers have expressed interest in signing free-agent shooting guard Jamal Crawford, sources said Monday.
That addition would make a lot of sense for them. The three-time sixth man of the year would provide much-needed help from the bench. The Sixers would also get another much-needed shooter and a great leader. He was recently named the NBA Teammate of the Year.
While 38 years old, Crawford still managed to average 10.3 points in just 20.7 minutes per game this past season with the Minnesota Timberwolves. It was his lowest minutes average since he played just 17.2 as a Chicago Bulls rookie in the 2000-01 season. He also shot 90.3 percent from the foul line.
He also spent a few years playing alongside JJ Redick on the Los Angeles Clippers. Redick was signed to a one-year deal on Monday.
A big-game player, Crawford stepped up his game in this season’s opening-round playoff series against the Houston Rockets. Crawford averaged 11.8 points and shot 41.2 percent on three-pointers as Minnesota lost the series in five games. He also averaged 2.6 rebounds, 2.4 assists and 1 steal in 24.6 minutes. His best game came during Game 5, as he scored 20 points on 8-for-10 shooting.
But Crawford is a consistent double-digit scorer, with averages of at least 10 points in 16 consecutive seasons. The Seattle native has career averages of 15 points and 3.4 assists and is shooting 86.2 percent from the foul line.
He became a free agent after declining his $4.5 million option with Minnesota for this season. The Sixers have around $13 million available in cap space and are looking for contributions from a reserve guard. That’s because Marco Belinelli, last season’s sixth man, has agreed to a two-year, $12 million contract with the Spurs and because the Sixers are looking to trade Jerryd Bayless or buy out his contract.
However, Golden State all-stars Kevin Durant, Steph Curry and Draymond Green are pushing for the NBA-champion Warriors to sign Crawford.