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Elton Brand to Sixers | Boozer Free Agency Tactics?

Elton Brand, Carlos Boozer, Free Agency, Sixers

July 9th, 2008 – Dr. Dime

Well I must say that I didn’t see this one coming at all!! Elton Brand according to multiple sources, at the end of the day will be signing with the Philadelphia 76ers for a reported $82 million over 5 years. In fact as of yesterday I was agreeing with virtually everything that my colleague Dr. Anklesnap has been spewing about why Brand would be staying with the Clippers. Probably one of the more mysterious aspects of the situation is that the Sixers offer of $82 million over five years is only a negligible amount more than the $80 million over 5 years the Clippers were willing to offer Brand. This fact has some industry pundits speculating that the Sixers may have secretly been in discussions with Brand before the start of the allowed free agency discussions on July 1st.

The world wide web is alive today with chatter about the possible Elton Brand signing, with a fairly large body of fans calling this situation Carlos Boozer and the Cavs Part II. Just like Boozer did to the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2004 before signing with the Utah Jazz, the rumor has it that Brand had told the Clippers he was going to resign with them. Apparently his intentions were to opt-out to merely give them financial flexibility to sign a big name free agent before eventually resigning.

The Boozer case was quite different however in that he had to convince the Cavaliers to let him out of the final year of his contract in order to become a restricted free agent, then went against his word to sign an offer sheet with the Jazz so big that the Cavaliers couldn’t afford to match it. This situation with Elton Brand is still causing quite the controversy among the L.A. fans however because by Brand expressing his desire to resign with the Clippers, the Clippers executives trusted he would return and did not spend much time during free agency trying to attract other front court replacements as a contingency plan. They took Brand at his word. Now with less than 24 hours before the end to the NBA free agent signing moratorium the Clippers are way behind the pack in trying to woo the big name free agents.

Early rumors have the Clippers trying to quickly refocus their attention on free agent Emeka Okafor of the Charlotte Bobcats, and the high-flying Josh Smith from the Atlanta Hawks. Although both players are young studs with tremendous upside, both players are also restricted free agents whose teams could match any offer made by the Clippers in order to retain their star players.

L.A. Clipper fans will undoubtedly be even more upset with Brand should he sign with the Sixers because they now missed their opportunity to tender an offer to their leading scorer last season, Corey Maggette, with their new found wealth. It is reported that Maggette has reached a verbal agreement with the Golden State Warriors yesterday for $50 million over 5 years.

The only possibility I can even fathom as to why Brand would leave L.A. for similar money in Philadelphia is to move to the weaker Eastern Conference where making the playoffs would be almost a certainty with his new club. If Brand felt that the pairing with Baron Davis was not enough to break through in the extremely tough Western Conference playoff race, it might make sense to move to Philadelphia where perennial success and the playoffs would be almost a certainty.

Elton Brand the leagues newest traitor?

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