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Philadelphia 76ers sign Elton Brand




| July 9, 2008

Philadelphia 76ers sign Elton BrandPhiladelphia 76ers President and General Manager Ed Stefanski announced today that the team has signed unrestricted free agent forward Elton Brand. Per team policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed. Varous reports suggest the deal is for 5 years and around $82 million, but that is not yet totally confirmed.

Brand was expected to re-sign with the Los Angeles Clippers, and word was that there was an understanding between Brand, the team and Baron Davis that Davis would join the team, followed by the return of Brand. Davis did verbally agree to become a Clipper back a week or so ago. But then the Warriors reportedly offered Brand big money, leading some to wonder if Elton was going to bail on the Clippers and head to Golden State. The Sixers seemed to be a late entry into the Brand sweepstakes, but have managed to grab him, causing many to wonder if Brand just screwed the Clippers over. Some are comparing this to the situation in Cleveland when Carlos Boozer left the team to sign with the Jazz.

For more on all of that, read the NBA rumors page every day.

And, as for this addition, it's a great one, giving Philly the low post force they've needed for years.

“We are very excited about adding a player of Elton Brand’s caliber,” Stefanski said. “We fully believe that his considerable talent, wealth of experience and proven leadership will mesh very well with the style of play of this team and he will be valuable member of this organization for years to come.”

"Elton Brand is the exact type of player we want playing for the Sixers," Comcast-Spectacor Chairman Ed Snider said. "He is a wonderful leader both on and off the court and the kind of gentleman who will have a tremendous and everlasting impact on our entire organization."

“(Sixers President) Ed Stefanski has done a terrific job of landing one of the premier players in the NBA,” Comcast-Spectacor President Peter Luukko said. “With the momentum we carried towards the end of last season and with the addition of Elton Brand, we have a very competitive team that is more than ready to vie for the Atlantic Division crown.”

Brand (6-8, 254), a nine-year veteran, has appeared in 614 career games with 609 starts, averaging 20.3 points (50.5% FGs; 73.8% FTs), 10.2 rebounds, 2.7 assists, 2.10 blocks and 0.94 steals in 38.3 minutes per game. He joins Tim Duncan, Kevin Garnett and Shaquille O’Neal as the only active players to have career averages of 20+ points and 10+ rebounds. Brand also ranks seventh among active players in offensive rebounding and has averaged 3.9 orpg for his career.

The 29-year-old enjoyed his finest season in 2005-06, helping the Clippers end their eight-year postseason drought. Brand averaged a career-high 24.7 points per game, finished seventh in voting for the Most Valuable Player award, earned All-NBA Second Team honors and was named to his second All-Star team (first coming in 2002). During the Clippers run to the Western Conference Semifinals, Brand averaged 25.4 points, 10.3 rebounds, 4.0 assists and 2.58 blocks in 12 games played.

Originally the first overall pick in the 1999 NBA Draft by Chicago, Brand shared Rookie of the Year honors with Houston’s Steve Francis. Following two seasons with the Bulls, Brand was traded on the night of the 2001 draft to the Clippers in exchange for Brian Skinner and the rights to Tyson Chandler, the second overall pick.

During an off-season workout last August, Brand suffered a ruptured left Achilles tendon which forced him to miss all but the final eight games of the 2007-08 season. In his first game back on April 2, Brand scored 19 points and averaged 17.6 points, 8.0 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 1.88 blocks for the season. From 2004-05 through 2006-07, Brand appeared in 240 of a possible 246 games and has played 80+ games in four of his nine seasons.

A native of Peekskill, N.Y., Brand was named a McDonald’s All-American following his senior year of high school and attended Duke University. In his second and final season at Duke, Brand helped the Blue Devils reach the NCAA Championship game while also earning consensus National Player of the Year honors.

An active member in the community throughout his NBA career, Brand established the Elton Brand Foundation in the spring of 2000 and donated $235,000 to open a reading and learning center in his hometown in 2004. Brand won the NBA Sportsmanship Award in 2006 and was a divisional winner in both 2004 and 2007. In 2003-04, he was named to the NBA All-Interview team and was named second-team in 2001-02.

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