As Kawhi Leonard hit the game-winning and series-clinching shot with 0 seconds on the clock, many wondered what would happen to the future of the 76ers. As the final buzzer sounded and the ball took forever to go in the basket, Brett Brown’s fate was at stake in round 2.
There was speculation that Brown would not be returning as head coach of the 76ers if the team did not make the NBA Finals. Other reports indicated that he may not return if the team did not make the Eastern Conference Finals. Either way, it appeared as if Brown’s future with the club hinged on Leonard’s buzzer-beating shot.
However, it appears as if those reports about letting Brown go are false. The team announced that Brown would be returning to the 76ers next season. It was confirmed a day after Philadelphia were eliminated by Toronto in seven games.
ESPN reported that Brown was removed from limbo about his coaching future after a “lengthy meeting” between Brown, Harris, and Brand.
“He’s done a fantastic job,” Joel Embiid said. “He’s an amazing coach, a better person, and I got a lot of love for him. If there is someone to blame, put it all on me.”
Brown has been with the team since 2013. In three straight seasons, the 76ers failed to win at least 20 games. In his fourth season with the club, the 76ers picked up 28 wins under Brown.
Last year was when basketball had changed in Philadelphia. The Sixers recorded 52 wins and reached the postseason for the first time in seven years.
Like last season, the 76ers were bounced in the Eastern Conference Semi-Finals. Looking back at last season and this year, it was the first time the 76ers recorded 50 or more wins in two straight seasons since the 1980s.
The future of the team remains unknown, as the likes of Jimmy Butler, Tobias Harris, and J.J. Reddick are all free agents this summer. At least the 76ers can solely focus on improving their team on the court after announcing that Brown would be back.
Will Harris, Reddick, and Butler all re-sign with the 76ers and try to replicate what they did in their few games together?