The Philadelphia 76ers have had an offseason full of drama after being eliminated in the second round of the playoffs. Their starting unit this season could look different with the changes to the roster.
The big question mark is James Harden, who opted into his player option to seek a trade. Philadelphia has not found what they deem an acceptable trade for Harden, which could lead to an ugly situation as training camp approaches soon.
Harden is a great player and was the co-star of Joel Embiid for the last one and a half season. He averaged 21 points per game, along with 6.1 rebounds and a league-leading 10.7 assists. He shot 44.1 percent from the field and 38.1 percent from three.
The 34-year-old guard is still talented, but if the Sixers are unable to work out the issue with him, it could be an uncomfortable situation heading into the season. Philadelphia focused on adding depth to their rotation outside of the Harden drama this offseason. Patrick Beverley and Kelly Oubre Jr. are two rotational players that they were able to sign in free agency.
It will be intriguing to see how everything plays out with Harden ahead of training camp. With that said, here is one player in danger of losing their starting job for the Sixers in the 2023-24 NBA training camp.
1 Sixers player in danger of losing starting job: PJ Tucker
PJ Tucker signed a three-year, $33 million contract with the Sixers in the 2022 offseason. The 38-year-old is a great defender and has shown the ability to knock down the corner three throughout his career.
While Tucker has been a good role player in his career, he could lose his starting spot this season. Philadelphia signing Oubre could allow them to start Oubre at small forward and move Tobias Harris over to power forward. Oubre is a talented forward and should have an important role for the Sixers. This past season, he averaged 20.2 points, 5.2 rebounds, and 1.4 steals across 48 games for the Charlotte Hornets.
Oubre is a solid finisher and defender who would balance offense and defense for Philadelphia's starting unit. With Oubre being a small forward, inserting him into the starting lineup would move Harris over to power forward.
Harris has played the power forward position before, and it should be a smooth transition for him.
Although Harris hasn't lived up to the max contract the Sixers signed him to, he has played his role well. He is one of their best shooters and a good third or fourth-scoring option. Harris is also a decent defender. He averaged 14.7 points, 5.7 rebounds, and 2.5 assists while shooting 50.1 percent from the floor and 38.9 percent from behind the arc. With his shooting ability and solid defense, Harris is a lock to remain in the starting lineup. However, he should move to power forward with the Oubre signing.
While Tucker could lose his starting spot, he will still have a role on the team. Tucker averaged 3.5 points and 3.9 rebounds, shooting 42.7 percent from the field and 39.3 percent from downtown. He doesn't provide much on the offensive end of the floor besides an occasional corner three. Tucker's main impact is matching up against a team's best scorer. His defense is valuable, but his lack of offense caused him to be played off the floor in some games last season.
Tucker should transition to one of the key role players off the bench, where he could thrive as a defender and still space the floor from the corner.
The Sixers' offseason has been full of drama, and it's not over yet. The Harden situation remains unanswered, but regardless, Tucker is expected to lose his starting spot as Philadelphia inserts Oubre into the starting lineup.