Elton Brand to Knicks? 76ers Plan to Keep Them Waiting

Justin Grasso

Finding a General Manager to take over a front office in the NBA isn't all that easy. The Philadelphia 76ers know the struggle of the search for one very well as they had a difficult time replacing Bryan Colangelo after he stepped down before the 2019 offseason.

The Sixers didn't want quickly to just quickly sign anybody to fill the position. They were willing to make it a drawn-out process if needed. After the word got out that multiple candidates turned the Sixers down, the team elected to roll with the head coach, Brett Brown, as the temporary General Manager throughout the first couple of months of last year's offseason.

Eventually, the team found its guy, though. Although Elton Brand was just suiting up for the Sixers a couple of years ago, the team was ready to issue the former forward a more prominent role on the squad as the front office head honcho.

Brand's arrival in Philly's front office as the GM garnered mixed reviews. On the one hand, many were excited to see what the former player could accomplish and were willing to see things through. On the other hand, many were disappointed because they preferred to see somebody with experience who could help turn the Sixers into a real contender.

Brand was no scrub in year one, though. Despite being a rookie General Manager, the 41-year-old front office man quickly became one of the more aggressive deal-makers around the league last season. While he made a handful of trades, the acquisition of Jimmy Butler and Tobias Harris was undoubtedly his most notable moves. Brand received a lot of credit last season for the job he did.

But his sophomore season in the front office hasn't been as promising. His most memorable signing during last summer's free agency is unfortunately not for good reason. After inking a 33-year-old Al Horford to a four-year, $109 million deal, Brand put the Sixers in a very awkward scenario. Now, the second-year GM went from receiving rave reviews to becoming an "if he gets fired" candidate.

If he gets fired, the New York Knicks are interested in Elton Brand, according to a report from the New York Daily News. However, the "if" factor in this equation is a stretch. At the moment, the Sixers are "very happy" with Elton Brand, according to The Inquirer's Keith Pompey.

As he's shown tremendous leadership, along with building up and maintaining strong relationships with players, agents, and executives around the league, the Sixers are quite intrigued by seeing what Brand can accomplish in his third season.

Since he's already on contract for 2020-2021, the 76ers aren't in any competition with the Knicks for Brand's service. The only way New York could grab Brand is if Philly fires him. At this point, it has become apparent that Brand will have at least another season to prove his value with the Philadelphia 76ers.

Justin Grasso covers the Philadelphia 76ers for Sports Illustrated. You can follow him on Twitter: @JGrasso_