Tobias Harris Addresses His Free Agency and Time with the Sixers

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Tobias Harris was in attendance at the 12th Annual Steve Nash Foundation Showdown up in New York City on Wednesday and was met with a flurry of questions from NY-based media. Before he could get into it, teammate Joel Embiid popped in when a reporter uttered “the Process”:

Harris then went proceeded to break down what he’s looking for as he enters free agency on July 1.

Full video, including his thoughts on his time in Philly and their style of play after the jump:

The first question was cut off, but it sounds like Harris was responding to whether the possibility to enter free agency was a determining factor in not signing an extension prior to the 2018-19 season:

Before the season, that was one of the reasons why I turned down the extension, was because… to be able to bet on yourself and also to have the opportunity to control what the next… whatever’s to come. So, that was, for me, one of the reasons why that decision came into play. Obviously, I’ve been traded around, but at the same time, I know my game. I know what I bring to the table, and I know what I’m looking for as a player

Reporters then asked the basic, generic questions about what Tobias is looking for in a team:

Reporter: What are you looking for in a team, in a city, in an organization?

Harris: A great organization. Obviously winning’s important for me, style of play is important… and just putting myself in the right opportunity to continue to improve my game and get better year in and year out. I know the work that I put in the off-season that correlates to the season. So, I know what’s gonna be expected of me as a player. Just being in the right situation to excel at that.

Reporter: Being a Long Island guy, the opportunity to be close to home, does that weigh in? Is that a determining factor in making a decision moving forward?

Harris: Like I just said, the things I just said about style of play, about being able to be in a situation to win and get better, those are things that stick out for me. Location is location, but at the same time those things I presented are first for me.

Then they got to the Philly angle:

Reporter: Philly had kind of like a half-season to kind of make their pitch to you in terms of their organization, their style of play. A couple of teammates are with you. What did you see out of them this year, playing with them?

Harris: I mean, obviously we were a couple bounces away from going to overtime versus the champs now. We didn’t have enough time to really get the full chemistry as we probably would have wanted to. But at the same time, it’s one of the most talented groups of players I’ve been a part of, and we’ll see what happens… I have teammates here to talk to, Joel and stuff. Joel is the best big man in the NBA, so the talent level of the group was phenomenal. We put ourselves in a position to win basketball games. The organization did a great job of just really showing me what was presented there in my time.

He was then asked if Philly’s style of play fits how he wants to play:

Harris: Yeah, I mean, I can fit in any style. I’ve been in different situations, different teams, I can fit any style. I’m a basketball player and I pride myself on going out and playing the right way. I fit any style. I’ve shown that throughout my career.

The reporters followed up with a Kenny Atkinson question, which Harris essentially shrugged off. It’s tough to gauge where his head is at ahead of free agency. There’s nothing in his comments to suggest that he’s definitely going elsewhere. I can’t blame him for wanting to test the open market, a market that will likely including multiple suitors putting on the full-court press for him. That said, Philly has the ability to offer him the longest term and most money. As long as Elton Brand and Josh Harris agree to throw down a max deal, I can’t imagine Tobias walking away from it.

For more on the Sixers ahead of the draft, be sure to tune into 97.3 ESPN today from 2-6 as our Sixers beat writer Kevin Kinkead co-hosts the station’s Sixers draft party with Mike Gill.

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3 Responses

  1. If it takes a full max contract to keep him around, you cut your losses, swallow the L and walk away.

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