Elton Brand signs with the Sixers amid flurry of negotiation
On July 1st, Elton Brand opted out of the final year of his contract with the Los Angeles Clippers. Brand told Sports Illustrated that “It definitely doesn’t mean I’m leaving the Clippers. We’re trying to work it out. My intention is to stay.”
$82 million later, Elton Brand signed with the Philadelphia 76ers with a 5 year deal. Lets face it, I don’t blame Brand for signing with the Sixers. The Los Angeles Clippers (formally from San Diego, formally from Buffalo) have never won an NBA Title. They have made it to the playoffs ONCE while Elton Brand was in LA (2005-2006) in which they lost in the Conference Semifinals. The Clippers play in the same city as the Lakers, and essentially are the annoying second cousin that you get stuck sitting next to at Thanksgiving. In the 37 years that they have existed, they have had 5 winning seasons, and 7 playoff appearances. The 76ers lost Corey Maggette to the Golden State Warriors, and although Baron Davis signed with the Clippers, Brand fled the coop and went to the city of Brotherly Love.
When Brand signed with the Sixers, there was alot of “he said, he said” between Clippers Head Coach Mike Dunleavy and Brand’s agent David Falk. Dunleavy seemed to think that Brand already had made a deal with the Clippers when he signed with the Sixers. “David Falk agreed to the deal. We have a contract that he marked up, changed the language, did whatever he wanted to do to it. He said if Baron is in, we’re in. He [Brand] texted our players. I’ve seen messages [saying] ‘hey dude, we’re in, me, you and BD,'” But agent David Falk fought back at Dunleavy and said the following: “The team should not be having two simultaneous negotiations with a player and his agent. But that’s the teams responsibility, not the player’s. I’m not happy about it, I’m not gloating about it. I regret that the process was flawed, but I don’t take any responsibility that the process was flawed.”
And then you have Brand who says his intentions were never about the money. “My intention was to be there with the L.A. Clippers. We were trying to make that work. But I hired a lawyer for a reason. We asked for some things, and it wasn’t even more money. We asked for some things and they said no”.
WHAT, exactly, did he ask for then? A life time supply of In N’ Out burgers? A Redwood tree inside his house? Come on…. I can understand Brand’s frustration in L.A., but he should’ve come out and said, “I wanted more money, L.A. isn’t winning, and I am going to play for the Sixers. Set aside the controversy, look this year for the Sixers to make some more transactions, and we may have a team that could at least pull a couple of games away from the Celtics.