Brett Brown has successfully shepherded the 76ers from tanking to the playoffs. Now he’s going to get the chance to take the team even further.
Deep down inside, part of Brett Brown had to be worried he wouldn’t get the chance to finish his job with the Philadelphia 76ers. Now he can rest a bit easier. The team has rewarded Brown with a three-year contract extension that will give him a chance to build off this year’s postseason run.
In fairness, this news really shouldn’t have come as a surprise. A 76ers special advisor told the media earlier this month that the team intended to enter into contract talks with Brown. Even so, initiating talks and agreeing to a deal are far different things. Brown has to be relieved to get such a strong vote of confidence from his front office.
After all, Colangelo and the Sixers could have opted to simply offer Brown a token extension. He still had one year left remaining on his deal. Offering him a one-year extension could have at least prevented him from entering the 2018/19 season as a lame duck coach.
Instead, Philadelphia has elected to make a “significant commitment” to its head coach. That should give him the opportunity to continue to grow alongside the team’s young core. In particular, he’ll be counted on to help Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons mature both on and off the floor. Their development, in large part, will determine the team’s success in the near future.
Of course, committing to Brown was also necessary to communicate franchise stability to potential free agents. The 76ers will certainly make a strong run at LeBron James and several other potential max players this summer. Those recruiting pitches would have been much more difficult without a clear idea of who the coach was going to be. Locking Brown down for the long haul could have a positive impact on attracting a star this summer.
Irrespective of what it means for free agency, it’s good for the 76ers young roster to keep hearing the same voice for the next several seasons. Changing coaches midstream could have disrupted the positive momentum the process has built in Philadelphia.