A few weeks ago, Dario Saric was telling his teammates in Europe that he’d be a Sixer next season. In addition to that, Saric’s father said he was going to play in Philly next season, also. So, all signs point to Saric playing for the Sixers next season, right?
As it turns out, new Sixers president of basketball operations and general manager, Bryan Colangelo, isn’t confirming anything just yet. Today on Breakfast on Broad, Colangelo joined the program and said that even though Saric has publicly stated his desire to come overseas for the 2016-2017 NBA season, he and Brett Brown will fly to Istanbul to talk with Saric and his family this summer, presumably to explain everything that will happen if Saric joins the Sixers next season.
Colangelo even addresses the rookie pay scale and why Saric might benefit from waiting another year before coming over so he can bypass that. Interesting stuff. Here’s what Colangelo said:
Well, you know, not to denounce the European media and what was said, I just don’t like to jump on speculation to further develop it or amplify it. I think what Brett and I are planning to do is take a trip to Istanbul here shortly. We’re gonna sit down with him, we’re gonna sit down with perhaps members of his family, his agent, and we’re gonna talk about all the alternatives and all the things and why we think it’s a good time for him to come over right now.
The circumstances might change over the course of the year. I think this is a great opportunity for him. I think there’s also an understanding and an idea that there’s more leverage for him to come the following year and forego the rookie [pay] scale. That’s, again, speculation and not necessarily the circumstance that we’ll find ourselves in as a team if we take a major step forward, or even a small, incremental step forward. Those circumstances might change.
We think this is good timing for him. We hope that he does have a desire to be here. He’s expressed that, I think, internally, but, also, as you indicated to the media, we’ll just have to continue to play this thing out. It might even have something to do with what we do in the draft. At the end of the day, he’s got to look at this and say, ‘This is the best place and the best time for me to come. And that’s why we’ll all sign the contract now.'”
It certainly sounds like Colangelo wants Saric here as soon as possible, but he realizes that a lot of things go into him leaving his European team. We’ll keep an eye on this to see if the Sixers can take the next step starting with next season.